The Government of Sweden
Basic principles of the Government in Sweden
In the Swedish Constitution: The Instrument of Government (SFS nr: 1974:152)
Chapter 6 of the Instrument of Government has the headline “Basic principles of the form of government”. Here is the content of Chapter 6:
- Article 1 provides the following: The Government consists of the Prime Minister and other ministers. The Prime Minister is appointed in accordance with the procedure laid down in Articles 2 to 4. The Prime Minister appoints the other ministers.
- Article 2 provides the following: When a Prime Minister is to be appointed, the Speaker summons for consultation representatives from each party group in the Riksdag. The Speaker confers with the Deputy Speakers before placing a proposal before the Riksdag. The Riksdag shall proceed to vote on the proposal no later than the fourth day following, without prior preparation in committee. If more than half the members of the Riksdag vote against the proposal, it is rejected. In any other case, it is adopted.
- Article 3 provides the following: If the Riksdag rejects the Speaker’s proposal, the procedure laid down in Article 2 is repeated. If the Riksdag rejects the Speaker’s proposal four times, the procedure for appointing a Prime Minister is abandoned and resumed only after an election for the Riksdag has been held. If no ordinary election is due in any case to be held within three months, an extraordinary election shall be held within the same space of time.
- Article 4 provides the following: When the Riksdag has approved a proposal for a new Prime Minister, he informs the Riksdag as soon as possible of the names of the ministers he has appointed. Government changes hands thereafter at a Council of State before the Head of State or, in his absence, before the Speaker. The Speaker is always summoned to attend such a Council. The Speaker issues a letter of appointment for the Prime Minister on the Riksdag’s behalf.
- Article 5 provides the following: If the Riksdag declares that the Prime Minister, or any other minister, no longer enjoys the confidence of parliament, the Speaker shall discharge the minister concerned. If the Government is in a position to order an extraordi-nary election, however, no decision to discharge the minister shall be announced, provided the Government calls an extraordinary election within one week from the declaration of no confidence.
- Article 6 provides the following: A minister shall be discharged if he so requests: the Prime Minister is discharged by the Speaker, and another minister by the Prime Minister. The Prime Minister may also discharge another minister in other circumstances.
- Article 7 provides the following: If the Prime Minister is discharged or dies, the Speaker discharges the other ministers. (see more about the Constitution of Sweden here)
- Article 8 provides the following: If all the members of the Government have been discharged, they remain at their posts until a new Government has assumed office. If a minister other than the Prime Minister has been discharged at his own request, he remains at his post until a successor has assumed office, should the Prime Minister so request.
- Article 9 provides the following: Only a person who has been a Swedish citizen for at least ten years may be a minister. A minister may not have any other public or private employment. Neither may he hold any appointment or engage in any activity which might impair public confidence in him.
- Article 10 provides the following: In the absence of the Speaker, a Deputy Speaker shall assume the duties incumbent upon the Speaker under the present Chapter. (see more about the Constitution of Sweden here)