Our work in China

Updated: 5 September 2014

China is one of the countries where Sweden during 2009-2013 have had a selective cooperation. The country has experienced strong economic growth and has become a major economic power. Growth has taken place at the expense of the environment. The gap between rich and poor and between urban and rural areas has increased. Political and civil rights are still highly restricted.

Bilateral cooperation was phased out in 2013

December 2013 was the last month for funding activities and there are no plans to develop a new country-specific strategy. Sweden has a strong desire to continue to deepen and broaden the close relations between Sweden and China.

A need for mutual interest

The 2009-2013 strategy for selective cooperation with China focused on Partner Driven Cooperation. The objective of partner driven cooperation  was to stimulate and strengthen the establishment of self-supporting relations of mutual interest between Swedish partners and partners in China that include common ownership, cost sharing and shared responsibility. 

The sustainability of these relations was expected to increase over time as funding from the development cooperation budget was gradually reduced.

Sweden’s development cooperation with China has focused on:

  • enhanced democratic development and increased respect for human rights
  • an environmentally and climate friendly sustainable development

Cooperation since 1979

Swedish development cooperation with China began in 1979. During the last strategy period 2009-2013, the cooperation has totalled 50 million SEK per year. 

The cooperation has financed exchanges of knowledge and experience between Swedish and Chinese government authorities, consultancy firms and research institutions.
It has also included humanitarian support, notably in connection with the earthquake in Sichuan in 2008.

Environmental cooperation

Within the environmental field, Sida supported the cooperation between the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency  and the Chinese Ministry for Environmental Protection (MEP). This included support for the China Council for International Cooperation on Environment and Development, a think-tank in which Chinese and international experts frame consultative analyses and engage in dialogue on these issues with the Chinese government.

Sida and the Swedish Ministry of Industry have also helped establish a Centre for Environmental Technology (Centec) to promote sustainable urban development in China. This has been done through a collaboration between Swedish and Chinese actors.

Cooperation for human rights

From 1996, Sida supported a human rights programme implemented by the Raoul Wallenberg Institute  at Lund University. This included a number of activities, such as support for a Master’s Degree in human rights at the Beijing University.

Sida also supported a centre for Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) in Beijing in order to deepen the cooperation with China in this area and foster collaboration between different actors in the field. The centre will serve as a platform for trainings, workshops, exchanges, meetings or roundtables for Swedes and Chinese citizens affected by these issues.

Information for Sida’s cooperation partners in projects in China

Sida has gathered some useful advice for partners who will write a final report on their projects.

Read more about the developments in China.  

Page owner: The Communication Department

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