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Finnish government formation talks run aground
Date 03/06/2011 13:00  Author webmaster  Hits 1459  Language Global
3 JUN 2011

NewsRoom Finland

Jyrki Katainen, the Finnish National Coalition party leader and prime minister-elect, said Wednesday that the Social Democrats and the Left Alliance had walked out of talks to form a six-party coalition, prompting him to ask the Centre party to reconsider its position.

Mari Kiviniemi, the Centre party leader and outgoing prime minister, said after a historic general election loss in April that her party would be in opposition for the next four years.

Kiviniemi's aide said there would be no comment from her before Thursday.

Katainen said the attempt to form a rainbow coalition had failed because of differences over policies to promote job creation and economic growth.

Jutta Urpilainen, the SDP leader, said Katainen had showed the door to the SDP and the Left Alliance.

Urpilainen and Paavo Arhinmäki, the Left Alliance leader, said neither party could accept an increase in the general VAT rate.

Katainen added he could not say whether the populist True Finns party would take part in a new round of talks.

The True Finns party, the biggest winner of the election, has refused to take part in government talks since the National Coalition party and the SDP struck a deal approving the Portugal bailout.

Soini told commercial broadcaster MTV3 that he was prepared to discuss with Katainen but added that his terms regarding EU bailouts had not changed.

NewsRoom Finland