New Latvian government set to be voted in next week

Nearly two-and-a-half months after parliamentary elections that were held on October 1, Latvia should finally get a new, three-party coalition, next week.

Following talks with President Egils Levits December 9, Prime Minister Krišjānis Kariņš – who is set to retain his current job – said coalition formation talks were complete.

"We are already at the finish line. Our goal is simple, but full of challenges – to achieve a broad economic transformation in the country, in the fields of security, education, energy, competitiveness and quality of life," Kariņs declared.

"The process to form this government has been very interesting, and sometimes challenging, but the important thing is that three political forces have united and pooled their strength instead of working each against the other. But I am looking forward with pleasure and satisfaction to next Wednesday, when I will be able to present the full cabinet and full [government] program to the Saeima for evaluation," said the PM, whose New Unity party will be joined in government by the National Alliance and the United List.

The President said he was satisfied with the prepared draft of the government's declaration and said he hoped the Saeima would hold its necessary vote on approving the new government next week. Barring administrative goofs, that should be assured.

The new coalition holds a slender majority in parliament with control of 54 out of 100 seats. Its three party composition positions it on a generally right-of-center political footing.

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