The new Swedish government has opted for not having a minister of European Affairs but to nominate a minister of Nordic Affairs. Does that mean we can expect a policy change from Stockholm?
Yes, it would seem so, if we are to believe the new minister of Nordic Affairs, Mrs Kristina Persson.
In an exclusive interview with the think tank Global Utmaning Mrs Persson heralds a new era in Swedish policies towards the rest of the world. Rather than seeing the EU as its starting point in global affairs, Sweden would operate in cooperation with the other Nordic countries within the EU as well as outside of it.
”The Nordic countries can exert a bigger influence both within the EU and towards
other larger regions, if we act together rather than each on his own,” Mrs Persson rightly points out.
A common Nordic approach within the EU is something almost unseen during the 20 years that Sweden has been an EU member country, largely because the Nordic countries tend to find it difficult to agree on most things.
Mrs Persson is also minister of ”Strategy and ””Future” and sees her task as preparing for global challenges, including green growth and technology job challenges.
The Nordic Affairs minister grants that the EU is important when it comes to solving the large global challenges but she also sees clear disadvantages of moving forward the EU way:
”The EU is an important platform in this but it consists of 28 countries which makes it difficult to take decisions quickly enough.”