Antti Rinne, the chairperson of the Social Democrats, announced which parties he has invited to the coalition formation talks in a press conference in Helsinki on Wednesday, 8 May. (Heikki Saukkomaa – Lehtikuva)

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THE SOCIAL DEMOCRATS, Centre, Greens, Left Alliance and Swedish People’s Party will begin negotiations over a forming a coalition government in Finland.

Antti Rinne, the chairperson of the Social Democrats, declared in a press conference earlier today that the next government will set out to tackle inequality, make investments in future, improve working life and combat climate change.

“This is the best composition for that,” he stated. “If we succeed in the negotiations, we’re set to have a clear majority government. The goal is still to finalise the government programme by 24 May. We’ll then start working on making sure all parliamentary groups are committed to the government programme.”

The five parties, he highlighted, were backed by a total of 1.7 million voters in last month's parliamentary elections and will hold 117 seats in the Finnish Parliament.

Rinne also underlined that all parties offered both elements that were good and elements that were incompatible from the viewpoint of the Social Democrats. “My estimate based on the discussions we had, especially with the National Coalition, is that it’ll be easier to find an agreement on the government programme’s contents with the Centre than National Coalition,” he elaborated.

Aleksi Teivainen – HT