Jyrki Katainen elected Finnish prime minister

08:30, June 23, 2011      

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Picture provided by the Finnish government shows Jyrki Katainen, the country's new prime minister. Finnish Parliament elected National Coalition Party chairman Jyrki Katainen prime minister of the new coalition government Wednesday. (Xinhua)

Finnish Parliament elected National Coalition Party chairman Jyrki Katainen prime minister of the new coalition government Wednesday.

Katainen polled 118 votes to achieve the simple majority required.

Finland's ruling National Coalition Party is the largest party in the 200-member parliament, having won 43 seats in elections on April 17.

In line with tradition, the largest party is offered the post of prime minister and forms a new government. Katainen led the talks to form a coalition government with the Social Democratic Party, Left Alliance, Swedish People's Party in Finland, the Green League and the Christian Democratic Party.

On 17 June, the six parties reached agreement on the new government programme and distribution of ministerial posts. The new government includes 19 ministers: with the National Coalition Party providing six, Social Democratic Party six, Left Alliance, Swedish People's Party in Finland and the Green League two each and the Christian Democratic Party one.

Finnish President Tarja Halonen will formally appoint the other ministers later Wednesday.

The new government has a four-year term.

The 39-year-old Katainen has been a member of parliament since 1999. He was chairman of parliament's Foreign Affairs Committee in 2007, Minister of Finance from April 2007 to present, party vice chairman from 2001-2004, and chairman since 2004.

Source: Xinhua

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