Ministry for Foreign Affairs (Sweden)

The Ministry for Foreign Affairs (Swedish: Utrikesdepartementet, UD) is responsible for Swedish foreign policy.

Ministry for Foreign Affairs
Arvfurstens palats 2011a.jpg
Arvfurstens palats, the seat of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, at Gustav Adolfs torg in Stockholm.
Agency overview
Formed1791 (1791)[1]
Ministers responsible
WebsiteEnglish-language website


The Ministry of Foreign Affairs was added in 1791, when Gustav III established the King's cabinet for foreign correspondence. The organization that was formally named the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1840 was then created in practice.

It is possible to speak of a foreign administration to the function as soon as we can discern a Swedish central state administration, and from the end of the 13th century. Under Gustav Vasa, the chancellery developed into the body that handled and expedited government matters. With Gustav II Adolf's reforms in the 1620s, a specialization was carried out within the chancellery so that foreign affairs were distributed among secretaries according to country.

The head of the chancellery was the chancellor. In a way, he can be described as foreign minister. More famous holders of this position are Axel Oxenstierna and Magnus Gabriel De la Gardie. The title was changed during Charles XI's time to Chancellery President.

During the period of freedom, the chancellery was divided into various expeditions, including a foreign expedition. These can be seen as predecessors to the ministries. The head of each expedition was a state secretary. The Chancellery President was the head of the Chancellery. During the period of freedom, his power was further strengthened. One of the famous holders of the post was Arvid Horn.

Government agenciesEdit

The Ministry for Foreign Affairs are principal for the following government agencies:


  1. ^ "Utrikesdepartementet". Nationalencyklopedin (in Swedish). Retrieved 13 November 2010. (subscription required)

External linksEdit