Finance chief Andersson tapped to be Sweden’s 1st female PM

COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — Swedish Finance Minister Magdalena Andersson is poised to become the country’s first female prime minister, after the governing Social Democratic Party on Thursday elected her as its new leader.

As new party leader Andersson, 54, will replace Stefan Lofven, who is also stepping down as Sweden’s prime minister. She must be confirmed as prime minister by Parliament, according to Sweden’s Constitution.

The two-party governing coalition hopes to secure her confirmation with the backing of two smaller parties. The country faces a general election next year.

Andersson was elected by acclamation on the second day of the party’s regular congress in Goteborg, Sweden’s second largest city. She was the only candidate.

Lofven, 63, must formally notify the speaker of Sweden’s Parliament that he is resigning and propose his replacement by Andersson, who then will form a government. No official time schedule has been released.

During his annual summer speech in August, Lofven, in office since 2014, unexpectedly announced that he was stepping down ahead of the party congress.

In June, Lofven became the first Swedish prime minister to lose a confidence motion in Parliament. But the country avoided a snap election as he was later able to form a coalition government that was the same as the previous one.

Lofven became in 2012 head of the Social Democrats that currently hold 100 of Parliament’s 349 seats.

Sweden’s next general election is scheduled for Sept. 11.

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