Local government and the EU

Local and regional government in Sweden is influenced by the European Union in many different ways. Projects across the country are co-financed by EU structural funds, and this demonstrates how the EU co-operates with municipalities, county councils and regions in community development.

When operating as supervisory bodies, local and regional authorities apply Swedish law that follows the European acquits. Food safety, rules on water quality and animal welfare are a few examples.

Swedish municipalities, county councils and regions are important employers, and are bound by common rules governing working hours and the working environment. The European level also plays a role in the production of services, for instance when inviting tenders. EU legislation on public procurement and competition forms an integral part of such activities.

Estimates show that approximately 60 per cent of the issues dealt with by municipal and county council assemblies are directly or indirectly influenced by European funding or decisions taken by the EU.

Municipalities, county councils and regions in Sweden play an active role in a number of organisations at European level, with a view to influencing the outcome of important EU decisions. The Assembly of European Regions (AER) has 14 Swedish county councils and regions among its members, and ten Swedish coastal regions attend the Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions (CPMR). Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmö are part of the Eurocities network, while a number of medium-sized towns are members of Eurotowns.

Swedish municipalities, county councils and regions are also represented by an office in Brussels.

Link to information about the office in Brussels

Further reading

Publications

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