With all four opposition parties now having left the talks, the red-green government does not have enough support for the proposal to be passed in parliament.
“It’s a day of disappointment for everyone who wants greater equality within the healthcare sector,” said Minister for Public Administration Ardalan Shekarabi.
Sweden currently has three large county councils centred around Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmö, as well as 16 smaller county councils. The government had proposed turning these smaller county councils into bigger regions, with the ambition of creating greater economic equality across Sweden's regions.
The biggest opposition party, the Moderates, abandoned the talks on Wednesday this week because the government did not agree to let people living in the regions have a say before going ahead with the plans. The Liberal Party pulled out on Tuesday.