With Sharon still in a coma after a massive stroke  nearly a month ago, Ehud Olmert, the acting prime minister, will lead the list.

Shimon Peres, the former prime minister, is expected to be number two on the list, followed by Tzipi Livni, the foreign minister, Meir Sheetrit, the education minister and Avi Dichter, the former head of the Shin Beth domestic intelligence service.

The unveiling of the candidates at a conference in Jerusalem will also mark the formal launch of the newly-formed centrist party's campaign for the 28 March election.

Split

Kadima was founded on 21 November when Sharon split from the right-wing Likud party.

Despite the loss of Sharon, polls give Kadima 40 of the 120 seats in the Knesset, around double the number of its nearest rivals.

While the candidates for the other two main parties, Likud and the centre-left Labour, have been chosen in a ballot of members, Kadima's list has been decided by the party's leadership.