This content was published in the period between 9 July 2021 and 30 November 2021

Rule of law and high energy prices at Stefan Löfven’s last EU Summit


The importance of Member States following the rule of law and the spike in energy prices were two of the issues that were discussed at European Council on October 21-22 in Brussels.

Statsminister Stefan Löfven
The EU Summit on October 21-22 in Brussels was most likely the last for Prime Minister Stefan Löfven. The rule of law, energy prices, migration and digital policy were on the agenda. The Summit conclusions recognize the Malmö Forum: "The Malmö International Forum on Holocaust Remembrance and Combating Antisemitism on 13 October 2021 is a reminder that no effort must be spared in fighting all forms of antisemitism, racism and xenophobia." Foto: Sveriges EU-representation

It was probably Mr Löfven’s last European Council meeting as prime minister, and both he and Germany’s Federal Chancellor Angela Merkel – for whom the meeting was also her last as chancellor – were thanked for their services. 

“A clear Swedish demand is that the rule of law must be complied for a country to be eligible to receive EU funds. This was an important factor in our negotiations on the EU’s long-term budget,” said Mr Löfven in connection with the meeting.

The discussion on the spike in energy prices and whether it is a reason to lower the EU’s climate ambitions was another issue on the leaders’ agenda. On this, Sweden’s position is quite the opposite – that the long term solution to the problem must be continued investment in sustainable energy. According to Mr Löfven, a large part of the problem of high energy prices is Europe’s great dependence on natural gas, and this must be broken in the long term. 

The leaders also received a status report on the spread of COVID-19 and the vaccination rates in the different Member States. 

At Sweden’s initiative, the leaders also discussed the importance of open and free trade, and the digital transformation. Regarding migration, there was a discussion on how to strengthen the EU’s cooperation with countries of transit and origin.

The recent Malmö Forum on Holocaust Remembrance and Combating Antisemitism made an impact on the Council conclusions, which was welcomed by Mr Löfven. 


More about the EU Summit October 21-22