President doesn't name new PM candidate

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On December 21 after a meeting with parties the Latvian president Raimonds Vējonis did not name a new PM nominee, giving the parties elected into the Saeima more time to reach an agreement.

Vējonis ventured to suggest that parties should make use of the special atmosphere of Christmas time to cast their differences aside.

"This week there have been substantial consultations. Parties have expressed a readiness to try to come to an agreement...Thanks to Krišjānis Kariņš and [his party] New Unity. They've used this week to meet and try to find common ground. It is important to make use of Christmas time, when there's a special atmosphere and when we forgive many things," said Vējonis.

He also asked the parties to try to set up a strong government which will be able to make decisions about setting the finance sector in order, and said in a subsequent statement that despite many weeks of negotiations "there is no reason to talk about a political crisis in the country."

Kariņš to continue coalition talks as "leader of New Unity"

Meanwhile Kariņš, who has been floated as a potential PM candidate but has not received a nomination, told the press after meeting the president that while currently there's a four-party coalition with 50 votes, this does not constitute a majority.

Kariņš admitted that talks have failed after KPV LV wanted to make Aldis Gobzems its candidate for Interior Minister. He said he has no personal objections to Gobzems, but his reputation issues would make it difficult for the government to take up the task of sorting out the finance sector.

He said parties will continue to look for a compromise during Christmas under the assumption that the current New Unity coalition is comprised by New Unity, Development/For!, the New Conservative Party and the National Alliance.

"Work will continue during the holidays and afterwards," he said, adding that while he has not received a PM nomination, he will not relinquish either.

"I am not ruling anything out right now...the process has still not borne fruit, but there's still a chance it might," he said.

Months after the Saeima election on October 6, Latvia is still overseen by a caretaker government as coalition talks have been stalling, most recently as KPV LV would not join the coalition as the candidacy of its leader Aldis Gobzems for Interior Minister was rejected by the other parties

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