A high priority focus in 2022, the Swedish Government is tasking the National Agency for Public Procurement (UHM) with devising ways of strengthening and developing public procurement to promote the climate transition and the shift to a circular economy.

The Government of Sweden has a highly developed set of tools and policies for its procurement activities for implementing strategic goals consistent with the Europe 2020 Strategy. Starting with the adoption of its first Green Procurement Action Plan in 2007, it has continued to evolve and innovate.

A recent development is the 2022 assignment to the National Agency for Public Procurement (UHM) to take a leading role across all government departments. The Government of Sweden announcement that the UHM should be leading the way to develop and maintain support functions to public procurement across all departments. The UHM now regroups all support functions for strategic public procurement in a ‘one-stop-shop’, to increase the availability, consistency and visibility of procurement support for procurement stakeholders. It has been actively engaged in developing guidance for greening procurement since 2015, but since the 2022 announcement they have developed sustainability criteria for purchasing with a focus on environmental and social sustainability. The sustainability criteria are developed for three levels to choose from: basic, advanced and spearhead. The user decides, with the help of available market information, ambition and needs, which level or levels to use.

Basic level: The basic level consists of criteria that are focused on reducing most of the environmental / sustainability impact that is linked to the specific product area. The idea is that it should be possible to carry out a sustainable procurement without excessive resources and specialist competence. Basic level is more ambitious than current legislation. The requirements are easy to use. There is often a good supply of goods and services that meet these requirements.

Advanced level: Advanced level goes beyond the basic level and may require a greater effort in following up and review evidence. Market availability may be lower, and it may require a greater effort to evaluate the criteria.

Spearhead level: At this level, you demand the best available alternative on the market in terms of environmental and other sustainability aspects. The spearhead requirements mean that you as a procurer may need more specialist expertise and may need to devote more time to the verification work.

The Swedish Environmental Protection Agency monitors the implementation of the green procurement plan, while the Swedish Competition Agency (KKV) is responsible for its overall implementation, with the support of the Swedish Environmental Management Council. In addition, the Ministry of Enterprise and Innovation supports public purchasers that want to specify environmental requirements, notably through training and a web-based tool, the

Swedish Instrument for Ecologically Sustainable Procurement.







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