Sweden's Moderates leader Ulf Kristersson to be proposed as PM

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Sweden's Moderates leader Ulf Kristersson to be proposed as PM
Moderates leader Ulf Kristersson speaking to press last week. Photo: Jonas Ekströmer / TT

The leader of Sweden's centre-right Moderate Party, Ulf Kristersson, will be nominated as the country's next prime minister, the parliamentary speaker said on Monday morning.


The speaker, Andreas Norlén, said he would put forward the proposal next Monday in an effort to break political deadlock that has lasted for eight weeks. This gives the centre-right leader seven days to meet with Sweden's other party leaders and try to form a workable coalition.

Then, parliament will vote on the proposal on Wednesday next week at the earliest, the day before a debate on this year's budget.

READ ALSO: Who is Sweden's Moderates leader Ulf Kristersson?

The speaker has a total of four chances to ask a candidate to try to form a government that will be accepted by parliament – and all four chances still remain, since parliament has not yet voted on any proposal.

It is not essential for a majority in parliament to support a government proposal, but it will fail if a majority vote against it. If they cannot agree, a new election shall be held within three months. However, this has never happened because parliament has always approved the first proposal.

But Norlén admitted he is not sure if that will be the case this time.

"It's not clear beforehand how different parties will feel about Ulf Kristersson as prime minister," he told Swedish media. If the proposal fails to get enough support, the speaker would have three remaining chances to propose a new government.

"The process must move forward, the dynamic between the parties has to change, the conversations without results have to come to an end," he said.

After the September 9th election left neither of the two main blocs with a clear majority, the country has been in political deadlock. Kristersson and the leader of the centre-left Social Democrats Stefan Löfven were each given two weeks to form a new coalition, but neither succeeded, leading Norlén to take a more active role in the process.

Kristersson will need either some of the parties on the centre-left or the far-right Sweden Democrats (SD) to back his proposed coalition, either by voting for it or by abstaining. However, his usual coalition partners in the Centre Party and Liberals have said they do not want to be part of a government backed by SD.

The latter, who campaigned on an anti-immigration platform, have said that they will not support a government unless they can influence its policies. But Kristersson said he would not negotiate with SD.

"The government will push the Alliance's economic and political reform agenda. If you can live with that, I think you should vote yes or at least tolerate it. Otherwise you should vote no," he told a press conference.


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