Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven speaks during a media conference at an EU summit in Brussels. Photo: Virginia Mayo / AP.
Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven speaks during a media conference at an EU summit in Brussels. Photo: Virginia Mayo / AP.

EU rule changes affect Sweden's voting strength

New voting rules for the European Union's Council of Ministers, which came into force this month, will mean less say for Sweden.

The new rules both lower the winning vote threshold to 65 percent and recalculate voting weights each year according to a state's population, giving greater weight to larger states like Germany and France.

The rule changes may also created greater agreement among the countries using the euro, since under a group of states only needs votes from countries representing 65 percent of the EU population and the eurozone as a whole already have 66 percent.

While Germany's voting weight in the council has almost doubled, from 8.2 to 15.9 percent, Sweden, which does not use the euro, has dropped from barely 3 percent of the vote to 1.8 percent.

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