Göran Persson was Prime Minister of Sweden 1996 - 2006. He is currently Chair of the Social Democratic Party.
From an early age, Mr. Persson was determined to help bring about a more modern and equal society. He joined the Social Democratic Youth of Sweden at the age of 15.
After having studied at the University College in Örebro, he embarked on a career in the Swedish Social Democratic Youth League. Thereafter he held several assignments within the municipality of Katrineholm, i a as chairman of the Board of Education. In 1979, Göran Persson was elected Member of Parliament. After five years as an MP, he returned to Katrineholm as Municipal Commissioner.
Mr. Persson has said that his tenures as Municipal Commissioner gave insights that became instrumental for his continued political activities. A key lesson was that society constantly evolves. “We will always face new challenges. People’s needs and demands grow and change all the time. Previous challenges return”.
The will to assist in improving Swedish society brought Mr. Persson back to Stockholm to take office as Minister for Education and Science. Between 1989 and 1991, he was responsible for matters relating to compulsory and upper secondary school education, vocational training and public education.
Mr. Persson was appointed Minister for Finance in 1994. One of his most important tasks as Finance Minister was to stabilize Sweden’s budget. Mr. Persson was elected Chair of the Social Democratic Party in March of 1996 - a position he still holds today. Later that year, he became Prime Minister of Sweden. He was re-elected in 1998 and 2002.
Under Göran Persson’s leadership, the Swedish Government pursed an active foreign policy aiming at promoting international peace and development. Mr. Persson remains strongly committed to, among other things, reducing unemployment, securing the quality of education, improving the integration of immigrants, protecting the environment and contributing to a world in peace and freedom.
Göran Persson was born in Vingåker, province of Sörmland, in 1949. He is married and has two daughters from a previous marriage.