New government announced
After weeks of haggling following the 17th April general election , Finland has a new six party coalition government.
The six parties include the largest party, the National Coalition Party (KOK), the Social Democratic Party of Finland (SDP), the Left Alliance (VAS), The Green League (VL), Swedish People’s Party (SFP) and Christian Democrats (KD).
The six parties agreed a new programme entitled ‘An Open, Fair and Bold Finland’. The programme focuses on stabilising public finances, the reduction of poverty, inequality and discrimination. In a victory for the Social Democrats, state finances will be strengthened by €2.5 billion through spending cuts and taxation, KOK had wanted much more.
The new government will consist of 19 ministers with six each from KOK and the SDP, two each from the VAS, SFP and VL and one from the KD.
Jyrki Katainen, leader of the National Coalition Party will become Prime Minister and his party will secure the ministries of Economic Affairs, Foreign Trade and European Affairs, Social Affairs, Public Administration and Local Government and Agriculture.
The Social Democrats will hold the Finance, Foreign Affairs, Health and Social Services, Education, Labour and Housing & Communications portfolios.
The Left Alliance will run the Transport and Culture ministries; The Green League take Environment and Development Cooperation; Justice and Defence go to the Swedish People’s Party and the Christian Democrats hold the Interior Ministry portfolio.