Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson received President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen

Published Updated

Stockholm, 7 April 2022

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It is a pleasure to welcome President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen to Stockholm and to Stockholm Exergi.

At this facility, 99 per cent of the district heating generated comes from renewable or recycled fuels. Stockholm Exergi is one of many companies putting Sweden at the forefront of the green transition and supported by the Swedish Recovery Plan.

All over Sweden, especially in the north, a new green industrial revolution is taking place, including the world’s greenest batteries, fossil-free steel and a new green standard for mining.

Many other companies are joining in – often innovative and fast-growing start-ups – creating thousands of new jobs, today and for the future.

With these advances, we are leading the way in the EU and in the world, proving that the green transition goes hand in hand with strong growth and more jobs.

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I appreciate our close cooperation with the Commission in the green and digital transitions, and in responding to Russia’s aggression against Ukraine.

We are witnessing increased Russian brutality in Ukraine, including attacks on civilians and civilian infrastructure. Horrific images from Bucha, the bombing of children’s hospitals and reports of executions of civilians in Mariupol mark a new dark chapter in European history.

There is clearly a time before and after 24 February. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is unprovoked, illegal, and unjustifiable. The responsibility for this war rests solely with President Putin and the Russian leadership.

Our European response has been firm and united. In record time we have imposed sanctions against Russia that are more far-reaching and more advanced than almost any observer would have deemed possible. Together with partners we are working to further isolate the Russian leadership.

We also remain committed to supporting Ukraine with humanitarian, financial and military aid. Sweden has already provided [EP1] a total of 10 000 anti-tank weapons to Ukraine and increased humanitarian aid to Ukraine by EUR 72 million. We are also prepared for further use of the European Peace Facility.

We are acting in solidarity with Ukraine, but also in solidarity with our common values: international law, human rights, democracy and the European security order.

The President and I agree: intentional attacks on the civilian population or civilian objects constitute a war crime. Russian violations of international law will be investigated and those responsible will be brought to justice. Sweden will support the International Criminal Court (ICC) financially and by providing national experts.

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The Russian invasion of Ukraine has made it more urgent and necessary to become independent of Russian oil and gas. We must speed up our climate efforts in order to cut our dependence.

It is clear that breaking our dependency on fossil fuels is important to fight climate change; it is also essential to strengthen our security.

To do this we have to secure our supply of renewable energy. We need to expand wind power and, in particular, recognise the importance of new green solutions based on bioenergy and forestry. In doing this, we will create sustainable societies with high growth and more jobs – today and for the future.