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alternative spring budget

Soc dems renege on cuts to save embassies

Published lördag 30 april 2011 kl 15.04
Urban Ahlin, Social Democrat Foreign Policy Spokesperson. Photo: Scanpix Montage: Swedish Radio

The Social Democrats want to save four embassies that the Government decided to close down as a result of the cuts on Government Offices that the opposition forced through.

It is the embassies in Vietnam, Malaysia, Argentina and Angola that the Social Democrats would like to save, by adding 8,3 million US dollars in their shadow budget for this explicit purpose. "We see that Swedish export companies loose market shares because Sweden is not present in strong growth markets," the Social Democrat foreign policy spokesperson Urban Ahlin told Swedish Radio News.

Last autumn, the red and green opposition parties, together with the Sweden democrats, pushed through a bill that meant the Government Offices have to cut its budget by nearly 50 million US dollars. 22 million of those cuts landed on the Foreign Ministry, where Foreign Minister Carl Bildt said he regretted the decision, but given the enforced cuts, he would have to close the four mentioned embassies.

According to Urban Ahlin this was a rash decision by the Government. He claims his party already back then stretched out a hand to the centre-right government for talks to jointly find a way to accommodate the cuts without any embassy closures. Now, in the Social Democrat's shadow spring budget, which will be presented on Monday, 8,3 million US dollars have been allocated to save the embassies from closure.

Our journalism is based on credibility and impartiality. Swedish Radio is independent and not affiliated to any political, religious, financial, public or private interests.
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