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The consequences of the new Swedish government after the 2018 national election and the extension of the temporary migration law

It took 131 days to form a government after the 2018 national elections, which is a record number of days for Sweden. Sweden’s parliament voted to give the Social Democrat leader, Stefan Löfven, a second term in office at the head of a new centre-left minority government, governing in a coalition with the Green party and with the parliamentary backing of the Centre and Liberal parties, formerly members of the four-party centre-right opposition Alliance. Even though the Social Democrats ahead of the election promised a firm migration policy with no change in the temporary migration law, however they now accepted some liberalizations. 

This has led to the decision on July 18th 2019, to extend the temporary migration law for two more years (2018/19:SfU26), until July 19, 2021. The proposals are based on the agreement between the government parties (the Social Democrats and the Green Party), the Center Party and the Liberals. Amendments to the temporary law mean that those granted subsidiary protection now have the same right to family reunification as refugees.

The Swedish Migration Agency says that they are prepared, however also warns that the changes that are now being introduced mean that the temporary law will be more complicated to apply to each case, which can lead to longer processing times. Moreover, according to the Migration Agency, around 30,000 persons with subsidiary protection first need to extend their permits before the family reunification application can be made, which also prolongs the process of actual reunification (read more in migrationsverket.se).

Sayaka Osanami Törngren
Henrik Emilsson