STOCKHOLM, July 1 (Reuters) – Sweden’s guardian Prime Minister Stefan Lofven was commissioned to form a new government on Thursday after the country’s right-wing opposition leader said he had not managed to get enough parliamentary votes to become prime minister himself.
The Social Democrat Lofven’s fragile center-left minority government collapsed this month after the Left Party withdrew its support over plans to facilitate certain rent controls on housing, prompting a no-confidence vote in parliament. Read more
Speaker of the Riksdag Andreas Norlen invited him to form a new administration hours after the opposition leader Ulf Kristersson abandoned his own attempt. It had become clear that legislators would not support his premiere, despite last-ditch efforts to win over centrists with spending promises. Read more
“This morning I spoke on the phone with Prime Minister Stefan Lofven and gave him the task of clarifying the possibilities for a new government,” Norlen said at a press conference.
Lofven will report back to the speaker no later than Monday and may face a vote in parliament days later, Norlen added.
“My answer remains that the Social Democrats and I are ready to shoulder the responsibility together with other constructive forces that are leading the country forward,” the caretaker’s Prime Minister said on social media.
The collapse of the government has resurrected unrest seen in the wake of the 2018 election, where the gains from the Sweden Democrats against immigration changed the political landscape, which meant that Lofven needed months to strike out a functioning, if insecure, coalition.
The government had wanted to facilitate Sweden’s rigid system for rent control, a form of collective agreement, to increase the construction of new apartments. The Left Party claimed that it would lead to increased rent for Sweden’s 3 million tenants.
After withdrawing from these plans, Lofven may have enough support for his premiership to be approved by Parliament, but it is still unlikely that it will be insufficient to ensure that his budgets go through unless some form of agreement between different parties is reached again. forged.
To run, he must avoid an absolute majority of deputies voting against his candidacy.
This will be the first vote initiated by the speaker to form a new government – if four such attempts fail, quick elections will be triggered automatically. Read more
Reporting by Johan Ahlander and Simon Johnson; Editing by Niklas Pollard and Pravin Char
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