Sweden’s Prime Minister Stefan Lofven has formally resigned for the second time, months after a no – confidence vote and political conflicts stopped his agenda ahead of the country’s upcoming general election in 2022.
Lofven was filmed on Wednesday when he handed over his letter of resignation to the Speaker of the Riksdag Andreas Norlen, which marks the end of his seven-year term as Prime Minister.
Back in August, Lofven had announced his intention to resign from office and claimed that he wanted to give his successor “the best conditions” for the 2022 parliamentary elections.
“The decision has matured over time. I have been party chairman for ten years, prime minister for seven. These years have been fantastic. But everything ends,” said Lofven.
Over the past year, Sweden has been followed by political conflicts that led Lofven to resign as Prime Minister after losing a vote of no confidence. He was later appointed the country’s leader after opposition parties failed to form a government.
The dispute that led to Lofven’s fall had revolved around a debate on housing market policy, which cost the Social Democrats that their coalition partner the Left Party deprived the government of a majority.
Magdalena Andersson, Minister of Finance, was recently elected as a replacement for Lofven as leader of the Social Democrats. Lofven’s resign paves the way for her to become the country’s first female prime minister, if she can secure the support of a majority of members of parliament.
It is not clear when a vote will be held in the Swedish Parliament on whether Andersson should be appointed prime minister. The Center Party has said that they will back Andersson’s bid to take over after Lofven as the country’s leader. The Left Party and the Green Party are expected to do the same.