Throughout 2016 Sweden has remained supportive of the advancement of SRHR, including access to modern contraception. This have been evident both in relation to the EU’s joint position, as well as in Sweden´s national capacity in the crucial policy foras of the UN such as CPD, CSW and the High Level meeting on HIV and AIDS. The Swedish government, including the Minister for Development Cooperation, the Minister for Foreign Affairs, as well as the Minister for Gender Equality, have officially in Sweden and internationally, expressed their strong support for SRHR, as a continued priority within the international development cooperation.
Policies & funding
Furthermore, the Swedish Foreign Service action plan sets the operational plan and agenda of foreign policy and the Swedish development cooperation (2015-2018). It points out that the Foreign Service will continue to be “a driving force for women´s sexual and reproductive health and rights, and devote special attention to the rights of girls and young people”. Within the budget lines for ODA 2017, SRHR is also spelled out to be strengthened as an integral part of the feminist foreign politics and the action plan.
The ODA for 2017 is set out to increase by 2.8 billion compared to 2016. The total sum will therefore be 46.1 billion due to the increased BNI. However, the domestic cost of the refugee crisis that is contained within the ODA budget is forecast to increase from 20% of ODA, to 24% in 2017. In 2015/2016 domestic costs were lower than expected, and therefore some of the previous cuts of, for instance, the Global Fund, were reinstated in 2016.
The political directives and text in relation to the budget lines for 2017 clearly underline the importance of strong support for gender equality, improved health and SRHR. Within the context of EU the follow up and implementation of the EU gender action plan will be key. The budget also includes increased support for UNFPA, UN Women and UNAIDS, as well as increased bilateral support through Sida in relation to social and economic development, which also includes more support to SRHR. Sweden has committed to allocating US$2.5 billion to RMNCH between 2015-2020 under the ‘Every Woman Every Child’ initiative.
The Swedish government has been focused on political outreach in securing a seat at the Security Council, in which succeeded. Feminist foreign politics, including a focus on gender equality, resolution 1325 and women´s participation in relation to peace and security, has been an integral part of the campaign, and will be a continued priority for Sweden in their new role.
Updated October 2016
Ensuring a strong EU voice at UN Commissions on Gender... April 30, 2017
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