This country-specific Q&A provides an overview of International Arbitration laws and regulations applicable in Sweden.
What legislation applies to arbitration in your country? Are there any mandatory laws?
The Arbitration Act (1999:116) (Sw. Lagen om skiljeförfarande) applies to arbitration in Sweden. The Arbitration Act contains a few mandatory procedural rules, such as the following:
Arbitration can only be used in disputes for matters in which the parties can reach a settlement (section 1). An arbitral award rendered in a dispute that cannot be decided by arbitrators is invalid (section 33).
The principal of equal treatment must be met, and the arbitrators must manage the dispute in an impartial, practical and speedy manner (section 21).
Both parties must have been given the opportunity (to the extent necessary) to be heard in adversarial proceedings, and to present the case in writing or orally (section 24).
The award and the way in which the award was made must meet the basic principles of Swedish public policy. The award must also be in writing and signed by the arbitrators (section 33).
The arbitrators must be impartial and independent (section 8). The court can assist in the appointment of arbitrators.
Is your country a signatory to the New York Convention? Are there any reservations to the general obligations of the Convention?
Yes, Sweden ratified the New York Convention 28 January 1972 and have not made any reservations to the Convention.
What other arbitration-related treaties and conventions is your country a party to?
Sweden has adopted the Convention on the Settlement of Investment Disputes between States and National of Other States 1965 (ICSID Convention). Further, Sweden is a party of multiple bilateral treaties.
Is the law governing international arbitration in your country based on the UNCITRAL Model Law? Are there significant differences between the two?
The UNCITRAL Model Law has not been adopted by Sweden. The Arbitration Act is, however, influenced by the Model Law and have few material differences from the Model Law.
Are there any impending plans to reform the arbitration laws in your country?
The Arbitration Act was recently amended with the goal of modernizing the law as well as attracting international arbitration to Sweden. The amendments have come into force as from 1 March 2019. We are not aware of any further impending plans.
What arbitral institutions (if any) exist in your country? When were their rules last amended? Are any amendments being considered?
The Arbitration Institute of the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce (SCC) is the principal arbitration institute in Sweden. The SCC was established in 1917 and consists of a Board and a Secretariat and provides dispute resolution under its own rules, the SCC Arbitration Rules (the SCC Rules) and the SCC Expedited Arbitration Rules. It should also be noted that the SCC Rules are highly adapted to the Swedish Arbitration Act.
Arbitrations administrated by the International Court of Arbitration under the ICC Rules of Arbitration are also available in Sweden.
The SCC Rules and the ICC Rules of Arbitration were amended in 2017.
Is there a specialist arbitration court in your country?
No. However, it should be noted that Svea Court of Appeal handles most of the challenge proceedings.
What are the validity requirements for an arbitration agreement under the laws of your country?
The following substantive requirements must be satisfied to form a valid arbitration agreement:
• The parties must have legal capacity to conclude an arbitration agreement.
• The arbitration agreement must be valid according to general rules of Swedish contract law (for example, it must not be tainted by fraud, duress or error).
• The arbitration agreement must refer to disputes arising out of a specific legal relationship or to a specific dispute.
• The matter must be arbitrable.
Pursuant to general rules of Swedish contract law, arbitration agreements do not need to be in a specific form. Therefore, an arbitration agreement can be concluded both orally, in writing, or through conduct.
Are arbitration clauses considered separable from the main contract?
The doctrine of separability is well established in Swedish arbitration and is codified in the Swedish Arbitration Act (section 3, Arbitration Act). As such, if the validity of an arbitration agreement constitutes part of another agreement it must be determined in conjunction with a determination of the jurisdiction of the arbitrators. Thus, the arbitration agreement shall be deemed to constitute a separate agreement.
Do the courts of your country apply a validation principle under which an arbitration agreement should be considered valid and enforceable if it would be so considered under at least one of the national laws potentially applicable to it?
There is no evidence of the validation principle being applicable under Swedish law.
Is there anything particular to note in your jurisdiction with regard to multi-party or multi-contract arbitration?
Multi-party arbitration is possible when the arbitration agreement has been entered into by more than two parties or when a party wishes to intervene in the arbitration. Under such circumstances, each party will have to agree on the choice of arbitrator. If the parties cannot agree, the counterparty can make an application to the district court, which may appoint an arbitrator.
Multiple contract arbitration is regulated in the SCC Rules. Under the SCC Rules, parties may make claims arising out of or in connection to more than one contract in a single arbitration. If the counterparty makes objections as to whether the issues will be handled in a single arbitration, the SCC will decide on the matter after consulting the parties.
In what instances can third parties or non-signatories be bound by an arbitration agreement? Are there any recent court decisions on these issues?
As a rule, arbitration is subject to contract and will only bind the parties to the arbitration agreement. However, there are instances in which a non-signatory can be bound by an arbitration agreement, notwithstanding the fact that its not a party to the agreement. Following a universal succession, a successor is bound by an arbitration agreement. Furthermore, the Swedish Supreme Court has ruled that, following a singular succession, a successor is normally bound by an arbitration agreement unless it would be unreasonable (see case number NJA 1997 p. 866). The same applies for guarantees.
Are any types of dispute considered non-arbitrable? Has there been any evolution in this regard in recent years?
Disputes that the parties may not settle by agreement are non-arbitrable (such as issues relating to criminal law). In addition, consumer-related disputes where arbitration has been agreed pre-dispute are non-arbitrable as well as most family law disputes. Furthermore, future disputes relating to legal relationships that are not specified in the agreement are non-arbitrable. Arbitrators can only rule on the civil law effects of competition law between parties and not on the substance of the competition law.
How is the law applicable to the substance determined? Is there a specific set of choice of law rules in your country?
The dispute shall be determined with application of the law or rules agreed to by the parties. Unless otherwise agreed by the parties’, a reference to the application of a certain state’s law shall be deemed to include that state’s substantive law and not its rules of private international law.
If the parties have not agreed on which law should be applied, the arbitrators determine the applicable law (section 27, Arbitration Act). In order to determine the applicable law, the arbitrators may consider the applicable conflict of law rules or apply the law most closely connected to the dispute. The arbitral tribunal may also decide ex aequo et bono, which, however, requires – as is common – the consent of the parties.
Have the courts in your country applied the UNIDROIT or any other transnational principles as the substantive law? If so, in what circumstances have such principles been applied?
No, not as far as we are aware. However, transnational principles such as the UNIDROIT and Draft Common Frame of Reference have been quoted and used by the Swedish Supreme Court for the purpose of interpreting national legislation.
In your country, are there any restrictions in the appointment of arbitrators?
The only formal requirement for an arbitrator is that they must possess full legal capacity regarding their actions and property (section 7, Arbitration Act). Therefore, to a large extent the parties can agree on the qualifications required by the arbitrators. Further, the arbitrator must be independent and impartial, e.g. in relation to the parties.
Are there any default requirements as to the selection of a tribunal?
Unless the parties have agreed otherwise, each party will appoint one arbitrator and the appointed arbitrators will appoint the third, who will act as chairperson (sections 13 and 20, Arbitration Act).
Can the local courts intervene in the selection of arbitrators? If so, how?
If a party fails to appoint an arbitrator within 30 days from receiving the request for arbitration, the other party can request the district court to appoint the second arbitrator (section 14, Arbitration Act).
Can the appointment of an arbitrator be challenged? What are the grounds for such challenge? What is the procedure for such challenge?
The arbitrators, or a party selected by the parties, can remove one of the arbitrators if there are justifiable doubts about impartiality (section 8, Arbitration Act). A party must bring the request for removal within 15 days from the date when the party became aware that the arbitrator had been appointed and the circumstance making the party doubt the impartiality. A successful removal cannot be appealed. A decision to deny or dismiss a request for removal may, however, be referred to the district court within 30 days from service of the decision (section 10, Arbitration Act).
The arbitrators can continue the arbitral proceedings pending a decision to determine the issue by the district court.
Have there been any recent developments concerning the duty of independence and impartiality of the arbitrators
Not as far as the authors are aware.
What happens in the case of a truncated tribunal? Is the tribunal able to continue with the proceedings?
Although very rare, truncated tribunals may appear if the arbitral award is to be rendered in short time. In this event, the remaining two arbitrators continue without the third arbitrator.
Are arbitrators immune from liability?
No. An arbitrator may be liable to pay damages if the arbitrator has acted with negligence according to the general rule of liability for negligence in Swedish contract law.
Is the principle of competence-competence recognized in your country?
Under the Swedish Arbitration Act, the concept of competence-competence is recognized and the arbitrators can rule on their own jurisdiction (section 2, Arbitration Act). However, the tribunal’s decision that they possess jurisdiction can be a reason to set aside the award. A party can appeal the arbitral tribunal’s decision that it possesses jurisdiction to the Court of Appeal.
What is the approach of local courts towards a party commencing litigation in apparent breach of an arbitration agreement?
If a party commences court proceedings in breach of an arbitration agreement, the court is obliged to dismiss the action on request from the other party. A party that wishes to object to the competence of a local court due to an arbitration agreement must invoke the arbitration agreement in the first writ of defense to the court (section 4, Arbitration Act).
How are arbitral proceedings commenced in your country? Are there any key provisions under the arbitration laws relating to limitation periods or time bars of which the parties should be aware?
Unless otherwise agreed by the parties, arbitral proceedings are formally commenced when a party receives a request for arbitration (section 19, Arbitration Act). A request must be in writing and include:
An express and unconditional request for arbitration.A description of the issue covered by the arbitration agreement and which is to be resolved by the arbitrators.
The requesting party’s choice of arbitrator (when the party is required to appoint one).
The time limit to challenge an award is two months from the date the parties received the award.
In what circumstances is it possible for a state or state entity to invoke state immunity in connection with the commencement of arbitration proceedings?
A state that has entered into a valid arbitration agreement should, in general, not be successful in raising a defense of state immunity.
What happens when a respondent fails to participate in the arbitration? Can the local courts compel participation?
Under section 24 of the Arbitration Act, such failure shall not prevent the continuation of the proceedings, but the dispute shall be resolved based on the existing material. The local courts cannot compel the defendant to join the arbitration proceedings.
Can third parties voluntarily join arbitration proceedings? If all parties agree to the intervention, is the tribunal bound by this agreement? If all parties do not agree to the intervention, can the tribunal allow for it?
Under section 24 of the Arbitration Act, such failure shall not prevent the continuation of the proceedings, but the dispute shall be resolved based on the existing material. The local courts cannot compel the defendant to join the arbitration proceedings.
Can local courts order third parties to participate in arbitration proceedings in your country?
What interim measures are available? Will local courts issue interim measures pending the constitution of the tribunal?
On request from a party, the arbitrators can order the other party to undertake an interim measure to secure the claim being adjudicated in the proceedings (unless otherwise agreed by the parties). In this case, the arbitrators can order the requesting party to provide reasonable security for the damage that may be incurred to the other party due to of the interim measure (section 25, Arbitration Act).
Are anti-suit and/or anti-arbitration injunctions available and enforceable in your country?
The legal situation is unclear. As for EU law, in Turner v Grovit (case C 159/02), the ECJ ruled that it is incompatible with EU law for a court of a member state to make an order restraining a party from commencing or continuing proceedings in the court of another member state in breach of an arbitration agreement.
Are there particular rules governing evidentiary matters in arbitration? Will the local courts in your jurisdiction play any role in the obtaining of evidence? Can local courts compel witnesses to participate in arbitration proceedings?
Pursuant to section 25 of the Arbitration Act, the parties shall provide the evidence in the arbitration. In both arbitration proceedings as well as procedures in national courts, the general rule is that the parties are free to invoke and present any evidence they wish to rely on and in whatever form, be that documents, witness statements or any other evidence (unless otherwise agreed). In similarity, the arbitral tribunal is free to evaluate the evidentiary value of the evidence presented in the way it finds appropriate. However, it should be noted that the arbitrators may refuse to admit evidence which is offered where such evidence is manifestly irrelevant to the case or where such refusal is justified having regard to the time at which it was offered (section 25 of the Arbitration Act).
Where a party wishes a witness to testify under oath, the party may, after obtaining the consent of the arbitrators, submit an application to such effect to the district court. If the competent district court grants the application, it may compel the witness to participate before the court by means of coercion, should the witness fail to follow the courts order.
What ethical codes and other professional standards, if any, apply to counsel and arbitrators conducting proceedings in your country?
No specific ethical codes apply to arbitrators in Sweden. The counsel is usually an attorney (Sw. advokat), i.e. a lawyer who has been admitted into the Swedish Bar Association. The Swedish Procedural Code of Judicial Procedure charges the Swedish Bar Association with the responsibility to ensure that attorneys meet professional standards and thus establishes certain requirements for membership in the association.
In your country, are there any rules with respect to the confidentiality of arbitration proceedings?
The Arbitration Act does not contain any provisions on confidentiality.
The arbitration agreement, or any other agreement between the parties, as well as the arbitration rules chosen by the parties, may contain confidentiality provisions. Contrary to court proceedings, third parties have no statutory access to pleadings, hearings or the arbitration award.
If the arbitration proceeding is conducted under the SCC Rules, the arbitrators and the institute must maintain the confidentiality of the arbitration and the award (Article 3, SCC Rules). However, if the award is challenged by a party, it becomes public in the local court unless one of the parties requests the court to restrict the public’s access to the award, and the court subsequently approves the request.
How are the costs of arbitration proceedings estimated and allocated?
In institutional arbitrations, the costs for the arbitrators and the administrative fee are usually fixed. The SCC has a cost calculator on its website which enables the parties to estimate the cost (see: https://sccinstitute.com/dispute-resolution/calculator/).
The cost allocation is subject to agreement between the parties. Unless otherwise agreed, the arbitrators can, on request from the successful party, order the unsuccessful party to bear the successful party’s costs in addition to its own costs. The arbitrators can also determine how the arbitrators’ compensation and the administrative fee for the arbitral institute will be allocated between the parties (section 42, Arbitration Act).
Can pre- and post-award interest be included on the principal claim and costs incurred?
Yes, if requested by a party. The rate depends on the applicable substantial law.
What legal requirements are there in your country for the recognition and enforcement of an award? Is there a requirement that the award be reasoned, i.e. substantiated and motivated?
A foreign award which is based on an arbitration agreement shall be recognized and enforced in Sweden, unless one of the grounds for non-enforcement is applicable.
According to the mandatory rules of the Arbitration Act, an award must be in writing and signed by the arbitrators (section 31, Arbitration Act). If these requirements are not fulfilled, the award will be null and void. Further, the award will not be enforceable. It should be noted that the rules of the SCC prescribe further requirements regarding the award. According to § 42 of the SCC Rules, the award must contain the reasons for the award.
What is the estimated timeframe for the recognition and enforcement of an award? May a party bring a motion for the recognition and enforcement of an award on an ex parte basis?
To enforce a Swedish arbitral award, a party must apply for enforcement with the Swedish Enforcement Authority. The most important factor in the length of this proceeding is the time spent serving the opposing party with the application for enforcement.
Enforcement of a foreign arbitral award is subject to an application for recognition of the award with the Svea Court of Appeal and serving the application for enforcement. The enforcement proceedings in the Svea Court of Appeal are not very time consuming if the other party is served with the application for recognition of the award.
Does the arbitration law of your country provide a different standard of review for recognition and enforcement of a foreign award compared with a domestic award?
If the losing party does not perform voluntarily, the successful party must apply for enforcement with the Swedish Enforcement Authority, which will enforce the award without prior confirmation from the courts if the following criteria are met:
• The award cannot be subject to appeal under the provisions in the arbitration agreement.
• The award is made in writing and is signed.
In addition, the opposing party must be afforded an opportunity to express its opinion on the application before enforcement takes place.
The Swedish Enforcement Authority will review the award on its own motion to ascertain that it fulfils the basic formalities and is not suffering from any apparent invalidity. An arbitral award is enforceable even if it is challenged in court, although the court can stay the enforcement proceedings. However, if the Enforcement Authority believes that there is reason to assume that the arbitration award is invalid, and litigation is not already pending, it will allow the applicant to institute proceedings in the matter against the defendant within one month (Swedish Enforcement Code (1991:174) (Sw. Utsökningsbalken), chapter 3, sections 15 and 16.
To enforce a foreign award in Sweden, the party seeking enforcement must first file an application for recognition and enforcement of the award with the Svea Court of Appeal in Stockholm, in contrast to enforcements of Swedish awards where you can apply directly to the Swedish Enforcement Authority. A foreign award, which is based on an arbitration agreement, will generally be recognized and enforced in Sweden, as long as no ground for non-enforcement is applicable. The application must include either the original award or a certified copy of it, and a certified translation of the award into Swedish. The application for enforcement must be served on the other party
Does the law impose limits on the available remedies? Are some remedies not enforceable by the local courts
No, generally, there are no such limitations provided that the remedy has been specifically requested by one of the parties and does not contravene public policy in Sweden. An arbitral tribunal cannot impose any conditional fines.
Can arbitration awards be appealed or challenged in local courts? What are the grounds and procedure?
It is a fundamental principle that an arbitration award cannot be appealed on its merits, unless the parties have agreed otherwise. An award can, however, be set aside by the courts on formal or procedural grounds.
An award can be declared void (in whole or in part) if one of the following circumstances are met (section 33, Arbitration Act):
The disputed matter was exempt from arbitration under Swedish law.
The award violates public policy.
The award is not in writing or has not been signed by a majority of the arbitrators or, if the parties so decide, by the chairman of the arbitral tribunal alone.
There is no time limit to seek annulment of the award.
It is, however, possible for one or both parties to request that an award be remitted to arbitration to remedy an error (section 35, Arbitration Act).
An award is challengeable and can be set aside by the court in the following cases:
If the award is not covered by a valid arbitration agreement (section 34, Arbitration Act).
If the arbitrators have made the award after the expiration of the time limit set by the parties (section 34, Arbitration Act).
If the arbitrators have exceeded their mandate, in a manner that probably influenced the outcome (section 34, Arbitration Act).
If the arbitral proceedings should not have taken place in Sweden (section 34, Arbitration Act).
If an arbitrator has been appointed in a manner that violates the parties’ agreement or the Arbitration Act (section 34, Arbitration Act).
If an arbitrator lacks legal capacity, impartiality or is not independent (section 34, Arbitration Act).
If, without fault of the party, there otherwise occurred an irregularity in the course of the proceedings which probably influenced the outcome of the case, provided that the procedural error was of reasonable importance to the challenging party (section 34, Arbitration Act and the Supreme Court’s decision 20 March 2019, case number NJA 2019 s. 171)
Parties forfeit the right to rely on a circumstance that they are deemed to have waived by participating in the proceedings without objection.
The time limit to challenge an award is two months from the date the parties received the award. Such action is brought to the court of appeal within the jurisdiction of which the arbitral tribunal had its seat, or Svea Court of Appeal, if the seat of the arbitral tribunal is not determined.
Can the parties waive any rights of appeal or challenge to an award by agreement before the dispute arises (such as in the arbitration clause)?
An arbitration award cannot be appealed on its merits unless the parties have agreed otherwise. It is not possible for a party to waive the right to apply for nullification. It is, however, possible for non-Swedish commercial parties to enter into an express written agreement where the parties waive the right to challenge an award (section 51, Arbitration Act).
To what extent might a state or state entity successfully raise a defence of state or sovereign immunity at the enforcement stage?
According to the case law of the Swedish Supreme Court, enforcement is possible in relation to property in use by the state for other than government non-commercial purposes with reference to Article 19 of the United Nations Convention on Jurisdictional Immunities of States and Their Property (NJA 2011 p. 475).
In what instances can third parties or non-signatories be bound by an award? To what extent might a third party challenge the recognition of an award?
An arbitration award is only binding on the parties to the arbitration proceeding. A third party may not challenge the recognition of an award.
Have courts in your jurisdiction considered third party funding in connection with arbitration proceedings recently?
No, as far as the authors are aware there is no case law, nor any specific rules regarding third party funding in Swedish legislation. There is, however, an increasing interest for third party funding in Sweden.
Is emergency arbitrator relief available in your country? Is this frequently used?
The SCC provides Emergency Arbitrator Proceedings. Out of the 175 cases registered by the SCC in 2019, eight concerned emergency arbitration.
Are there arbitral laws or arbitration institutional rules in your country providing for simplified or expedited procedures for claims under a certain value? Are they often used?
Yes. It is possible for the parties to agree to expedited arbitration with the SCC. An expedited procedure administered by the SCC is possible provided that the parties have agreed that the dispute shall be resolved under the SCC Rules for Expedited Arbitration, either before or after the dispute arose. In an expedited procedure, the parties may only submit a limited number of petitions and shorter deadlines are applied. Thus, this procedure is appropriate for disputes of a simpler nature. In 2019, 30 percent of the cases registered with the SCC were registered under the SCC Rules for Expedited Arbitration.
Have measures been taken by arbitral institutions in your country to promote transparency in arbitration?
The SCC has launched the Swedish Arbitration Portal on its website. The project’s mission is to increase transparency in arbitration by making Swedish case law and its evolution more accessible to the international community. The portal contains decisions from all instances of the Swedish courts on issues related to both international and domestic arbitrations. The portal also provides free access to English translations of the Swedish courts’ decisions.
Is diversity in the choice of arbitrators and counsel (e.g. gender, age, origin) actively promoted in your country? If so, how?
The SCC is promoting the participation of women and other underrepresented groups in the dispute resolution field, for example by providing seminars and discussions on the topic. Further, statistics regarding the appointed arbitrators show a continued increase in the number of women appointed by the SCC, from 29 percent in 2018 to 32 percent in 2019 and the SCC sees a positive trend, albeit slower than they have hoped.
Have there been any recent court decisions in your country considering the setting aside of an award that has been enforced in another jurisdiction or vice versa?
No, not as far as the authors are aware.
Have there been any recent court decisions in your country considering the issue of corruption? What standard do local courts apply for proving of corruption? Which party bears the burden of proving corruption?
No, not to the authors’ knowledge. Generally, the burden of proof lies on the party claiming corruption, who has to show that there has been corruption.
Have there been any recent court decisions in your country considering the definition and application of “public policy” in the context of enforcing or setting aside an arbitral award?
In 2018, the Swedish Supreme Court rejected the enforceability of a Norwegian arbitral award with the application of public policy (NJA 2018 p. 323). In the case, the parties had entered into a contract which included a non-compete clause in breach of mandatory Swedish and EU competition law. The Swedish Supreme Court emphasized that there was a need to safeguard that arbitral awards do not conflict with such mandatory provisions.
Have there been any recent court decisions in your country considering the judgment of the Court of Justice of the European Union in Slovak Republic v Achmea BV (Case C-284/16) with respect to intra-European Union bilateral investment treaties or the Energy Charter Treaty? Are there any pending decisions?
On 4 February 2020, The Supreme Court of Sweden requested a preliminary ruling from the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) on whether the Achmea-ruling requires it to set aside two Intra-Bilateral Investment Treaty awards against Poland, even though the state was found to have entered into a new arbitration agreement with an investor by consenting to the arbitration through its conduct. The Supreme Court is now awaiting the preliminary ruling of the CJEU, which could potentially have a significant impact upon parties involved in intra-EU investor-state dispute settlement cases.
Have there are been any recent decisions in your country considering the General Court of the European Union’s decision Micula & Ors (Joined Cases T-624/15, T-694/15 and T-694.15), ECLI:EU:T:2019:423, dated 18 June 2019? Are there any pending decisions?
No, as far as the authors are aware, the decision has not been cited by any Swedish court decision as of this date, nor are there any pending decisions.
What measures, if any, have arbitral institutions in your country taken in response to the COVID-19 pandemic?
The SCC has taken various measures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. At the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, the SCC already had a digitized system in place, which means that the SCC has maintained its usual routines at a normal work pace. In addition, the SCC has launched a special version of the SCC Platform to ad hoc arbitrations. The use of the platform is free of charge from start to finish for any ad hoc arbitration commenced during the COVID-19 outbreak. It is essentially a secure digital platform for sharing communication between the parties and the tribunal.
In your country, does the insolvency of a party affect the enforceability of an arbitration agreement?
No. The bankruptcy estate is bound by the arbitration agreement. In the event of a bankruptcy proceeding, the bankruptcy administrator will be given the option to intervene in the arbitration proceeding (that is, to continue the arbitration process on behalf of the estate). If the bankruptcy administrator chooses not to continue the arbitration process, the arbitration will be separated from the bankruptcy estate and will as such not be affected by the bankruptcy proceedings. The arbitration agreement is not affected by company reconstruction proceedings.
Is your country a Contracting Party to the Energy Charter Treaty? If so, has it expressed any specific views as to the current negotiations on the modernization of the Treaty?
Yes, Sweden is a contracting party. No, as far as the authors are aware Sweden has not expressed any specific views as to the current negotiations on the modernization of the Treaty.
Have there been any recent developments in your jurisdiction with regard to disputes on climate change and/or human rights?
As far as the authors are aware, there have been no significant developments with regard to disputes on climate change and/or human rights. However, in 2015, two Swedish environmental non-governmental organisations and numerous individuals initiated a climate change litigation case against the Swedish state (Svea Court of Appeal, T 7261-17). The claimants alleged that the state, by the sale of coal power plants to a Czech company, had breached the claimants right to life and the right to respect for private and family life under Articles 2 and 8 of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms. Further, the claimants alleged that the sale meant a large, immediate and foreseeable risk of significantly increased emissions of greenhouse gases, which would have a direct impact on climate changes. In its judgement, the Stockholm District Court rejected the claims. The court held that the claim was based on a risk analysis based on a hypothetical reasoning of a possible course of events due to the sale of the power plants. Further, the action did not mean that the claimants had been exposed to a concrete danger to life or that there had been any form of concrete harmful effects. Consequently, the court held that the claimants’ rights under Article 2 and 8 ECHR had not been breached. The Svea Court of Appeal upheld the judgement from Stockholm District Court.
Estimated word count: 5633
Privacy & Cookies Policy
Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. These cookies do not store any personal information.
Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. It is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these cookies on your website.