Sweden EU-Presidency & the Democracy Agenda

Sweden EU-Presidency & the Democracy Agenda


Sweden will hold the Presidency of the Council of the European Union in the first semester of 2023. One of Sweden’s priorities is to put democracy high on the EU foreign policy agenda. International IDEA supports Sweden in this effort and implements a project to assess the EU’s external democracy policy.

The project is assessing the relevance of EU’s external democracy policy and action, taking into account shifts in the state of democracy and major geopolitical crises such as the Covid-19 pandemic or Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine. Feedback and insights from democracy partners in the Global South and in the European neighbourhood will inform recommendations on a potential recalibration of EU policies and actions.

The project findings should notably feed into the mid-term review of the EU Action Plan on Human Rights and Democracy 2020-2024 , which is scheduled to take place during the Swedish EU-Presidency. While the primary focus of the project is on democracy, it takes into account the interdependence between human rights and democracy.

The project activities include a desk study, interviews, surveys, and regional dialogues in the following regions: Asia-Pacific, the Middle East and North-Africa , Eastern-Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean, Africa and the Western Balkans.

Based on these activities, the project team will produce a report and a policy brief, which will be used to support the Swedish EU-Presidency’s objective to prioritize democracy on the EU agenda and to bring relevant messages to the attention of EU institutions up to the political level. The key findings and recommendations captured in the two documents will also be discussed during a multi-stakeholder conference marking the launch of the report.

Together, these outputs aim to support future EU democracy policy, and help design its main priorities in a rapidly changing global landscape.

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Sweden EU-Presidency & the Democracy Agenda project: hidden stories of democracy to inform the EU policies

How does civil society in Asia Pacific view the EU´s external democracy policy in the region?