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Finland: election, Social Democrats clinch narrow victory, followed by nationalists. Greens increase their share, Centre Party loses ground

Il leader socialdemocratico finlandese Antti Rinne


With a voter turnout of 72%, Finland’s general election results were full of surprises. Antti Rinne’s Social Democrats (who won 17.7% of the vote, up 1.2% compared to the previous election) were the most voted party with 40 seats in parliament. Surprisingly, the nationalist Finns Party, led by Jussi Halla-aho, won 17.5% of the vote and 39 seats (slightly decreasing by 0.1% compared to 2015). It is also surprising that the Centre Party (Suomen Keskusta) of the outgoing Prime Minister Juha Sipilä dropped to 13.8% of the vote (down 7.3% and 18 MPs), falling from first- to fourth-largest party in the country. The National Coalition Party (KOK) led by Petteri Orpo, that was part of the ruling coalition, secured 17% of the vote, down 1.2% compared to 2015. The Greens led by Pekka Haavisto largely increased their share of the vote to 11.5% (up 5%), securing 20 seats in parliament. Also the Left Alliance led by Li Andersson increased its share of the vote to 8.2%, securing 16 seats. The Swedish People’s Party and the Christian Democrats remained stable compared to the previous election, securing 9 and 5 seats respectively. The “Blue Party”, the third coalition partner in Juha Sipilä’s cabinet, dropped out. Talks will now start to form a coalition government. Finland will take on the six-month presidency of the EU in the second half of 2019, when the new European Parliament and the next European Commission are due to take office.

 

 

 

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