A number of steps towards equality between women and men have been undertaken in Sweden since the Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing. The following is a report of measures undertaken as well as of some of the measures planned with respect to the critical areas of concern of the Platform for Action (PFA).
During the autumn of 1995 and spring of 1996, work was actively carried out within the Swedish Cabinet Office in order to identify and analyse how Sweden is living up to the commitments within the PFA. Every department has studied the PFA within its respective area of responsibility and has reported the result to the division for Equality Affairs at the Ministry of Labour.
On the Government's behalf, the Minister for Equality Affairs has subsequently reported the results in a written communication to Parliament. The written communication also contains a report of how the policy for equality between women and men has developed during the last few years and sets forth the main features of the work for the years to come. A parliamentary debate with respect to the contents of the written communication took place in March, 1997.
In summary, it may be stated that Sweden is largely living up to the commitments in the PFA. The issues dealt with in the PFA are also those which form the basis of the Swedish national policy for equality. As a result, the issues in the PFA will be relevant to deal with in Sweden during the period up to the year 2000 and beyond. Consequently, Sweden will work further with regard to the critical areas of concern of the PFA and will regularly inform the Swedish Parliament with respect to the progress of the work and the results achieved.
Furthermore, Sweden will continue to work actively to integrate a gender perspective into it's international development cooperation and will act in various ways to strengthen the implementation of women's human rights globally.
It should also be noted that in the beginning of 1997, approximately 40 Swedish women's organisations and other organisations working for equality between women and men formed an umbrella organisation, SAMS. The formation of the new organisation may be regarded as a direct result of the Beijing Conference and the need to co-ordinate the Swedish NGO participation in international cooperation in the field of equality. One of the main aims of the newly formed organisation is to work with the Beijing PFA.
It should at last be noted that the listing of measures in the present report is not exhaustive.