Defence Minister Peter Hultqvist.
Defence Minister Peter Hultqvist. Credit: Maja Suslin/TT

Local authorities told to get their crisis plans in order

Peter Hultqvist: This is about building robustness
2:47 min

To raise Sweden's total defence capabilities, the government is calling on the country's local and county councils to make sure that they have protected safe havens where they can function in times of war or national crisis.

This means, for example, that they can work from alternative places that have electricity, safe communication equipment and food.

This is about building robustness," says Defense Minister Peter Hultqvist to Swedish Radio News.

The background is Sweden's decision by parliament to strengthen the overall defence in the face of global insecurity.

Sweden's Armed Forces and the Civil Contingencies Agency (MSB) have been given the task of overseeing the work of local and county councils in strengthening their supplies of energy and transport, economic systems and security.

They will also make sure that all authorities are fulfilling their obligation to have safe, sheltered environments to work from in times of crisis. These so-called bunkers have deteriorated since the end of the Cold War.

In addition, the relevant authorities must also ensure that people are appointed who have responsibility for all important services so that they are in place and know what to do and how systems should operate in a crisis or war.

"It must be made clear what the task of the staff is who have certain types of strategic services in a war situation and that it must be part of a joint planning and that these persons with their competence are bound to perform these tasks. They should also be clearly informed of what obligations they have in such a situation," says Defence Minister Peter Hultqvist to Swedish Radio.

The government also announced on Thursday that the Swedish Civil Aviation Administration, the Swedish Maritime Administration, the Swedish Transport Administration and the Transport Agency must report what they have been doing and will do to ensure that transport and infrastructure work in the event of major accidents, sabotage or in the worst scenario, war. 

"The purpose is to both increase awareness of the need for emergency preparedness, identification of the most critical transport managers, and to consider in advance different types of scenarios and to be prepared to handle them," says infrastructire minister Anna Johansson.

In its' spring supplementary budget, the government proposed SEK 60 million to strengthen municipalities' and county councils' work in the area of civilian defence and SEK 15 million for the county administrative boards for total defence planning.

As well as extra resources for the Armed Forces, extra money was also targeted for the National Defense Radio Establishment, for stronger resilience to cyberattacks against public services, and for cyberattack counter-measures by the Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency (MSB).

Our journalism is based on credibility and impartiality. Swedish Radio is independent and not affiliated to any political, religious, financial, public or private interests.
Du hittar dina sparade avsnitt i menyn under "Min lista".