Finnish Prime Minister concedes election defeat

Alexander Stubb congratulates the opposition Centre Party after projection showed his party coming second in the polls.

    Finnish Prime Minister concedes election defeat
    Alexander Stubb lost the election that was mainly focused on how to lift Finland out of its three-year economic slump [Reuters]

    Finnish Prime Minister Alexander Stubb conceded defeat in Sunday's general election, which saw the opposition Centre Party and its leader Juha Sipila come out on top.

    "It seems as though the Centre has won. Congratulations," Stubb told Finnish public radio and television YLE.

    Projections by YLE showed the Centre Party winning 46 of 200 seats in parliament, while Stubb's conservative National Coalition Party was seen taking 37 seats, the same number as the Social Democrats.

    The right-wing eurosceptic Finns Party was seen taking 35 seats.

    Voters were disgruntled with Stubb's four-party left-right government coalition, which has been paralysed by internal discord and unable to push through any real policy changes.

    Centre Party leader Juha Sipila, a 53-year-old IT millionaire and newcomer to politics, is expected to become the next prime minister.

    Tradition dictates that the largest party takes the post of prime minister and forms a government with the other largest parties to obtain a majority in parliament.

    In an election that was mainly focused on how to lift Finland out of its three-year economic slump, Sipila campaigned heavily on his business know-how.

    He has vowed to created 200,000 private sector jobs over 10 years.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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