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EU PolicyWatch

Database of national-level policy measures

Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.

Factsheet for measure SE-2022-12/2346 – measures in Sweden

Exemptions in building regulations to facilitate temporary housing for refugees

Enklare att anordna tillfälliga boenden för flyktingar

Country Sweden , applies nationwide
Time period Open ended, started on 15 March 2022
Context War in Ukraine
Type Legislations or other statutory regulations
Category Measures to prevent social hardship
– Keeping or obtaining a safe home
Author Anna-Karin Gustafsson (Oxford Research) and Eurofound
Measure added 19 May 2022 (updated 20 June 2022)

Background information

Sweden is welcoming refugees fleeing the war in Ukraine in accordance with the EU Directive on Temporary Protection 2001/55/EC. In order to provide housing rapidly to those seeking temporary protection in Sweden, the government has decided to grant municipalities exceptions to the requirements in the Planning and Building Act 2010/900 (plan- och bygglagen). Similar exceptions have preciously been made for persons seeking asylum, but not for temporary protection.

Content of measure

Due to the amendment, the government can decide on exemptions from, for example, the requirement for a building permit in order to arrange temporary accommodation for those who are now seeking protection in Sweden under the EU Directive on Temporary Protection 2001/55/EC.

The government has also decided on two regulations that abolish the requirement for building permits and created exemptions from certain other rules in the planning and building regulations when a municipality is to arrange arrival accommodation for refugees, or when state authorities such as the Swedish Migration Agency (Migrationsverket) are to establish accommodation facilities.

It will be possible to apply the exemptions retroactively to initiatives starting before the exemption measure was entered into force, but 15 March the earliest. The retroactivity means that the municipalities and state authorities concerned can in disregard the obstacle that the current provisions in the Planning and Building Act may pose, even before the exemptions have formally entered into force.

Use of measure

Not available at this stage.

Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Does not apply to workers Sector specific set of companies
Migrants or refugees

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
National government
Local / regional government
No special funding required

Social partners

Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role Consulted Consulted
Form Direct consultation outside a formal body Direct consultation outside a formal body

Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:

  • Unknown
  • Main level of involvement: Unknown


Relevant trade unions and employers organisations were consulted by the government and have left a statement regarding the amendment.

Views and reactions

Both the employers organisation the Swedish Construction Federation (Byggföretagen) and the trade union Architects Sweden (Sveriges Arkitekter) saw the measure as necessary and welcomed it, but wanted to underline the need of the exemptions to be of temporary nature.

Sectors and occupations

    • Economic area Sector (NACE level 2)
      F - Construction F41 Construction of buildings

This case is not occupation-specific.


  • 21 March 2022: Statement by The Swedish Construction Federation [Byggföretagens yttrande] (
  • 21 March 2022: Statement by Architects Sweden (Yttrande från Sveriges Arkitekter) (
  • 29 April 2022: Easier to arrange temporary housing for refugees (Enklare att anordna tillfälliga boenden för flyktingar) (


Eurofound (2022), Exemptions in building regulations to facilitate temporary housing for refugees, measure SE-2022-12/2346 (measures in Sweden), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin,


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Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.