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Majority government in place

A left-of-center coalition formed Norway’s first majority government in 20 years on Monday. The “Red-Green” alliance is between the Labour party, Socialists and Center party.

18/10/2005 :: This is the second time Mr. Jens Stoltenberg is commissioned by the King to form a government. The last time he was appointed Prime Minister was in 2000. That government lasted 18 months until it resigned after the election defeat in 2001.

Jens Stoltenberg was born in Oslo on 16 March 1959, and he is Candidatus Oeconomiae (economist) at the University of Oslo from 1987. He has also been Minister of Finance 1996-1997 in Thorbjørn Jagland’s government and Minister of Trade and Energy 1993-1996 in Gro Harlem Brundtland’s government. In 1990-1991 he was state secretary at the Ministry of the Environment under Gro Harlem Brundtland. Mr. Stoltenberg has been member of the Storting for Oslo since 1993 and was Labour’s parliamentary leader at the change of government.

In 1991-1993 he was member of the Storting’s standing committee on social affairs and leader of the standing committee on oil and energy affairs 1997-2000. Mr. Stoltenberg was member of the standing committee on foreign affairs 2001-2005. Since 2002 the new Prime Minister has been leader of the Labour Party, and he has been member of the party’s central board since 1985. Jens Stoltenberg was a part-time journalist on the national daily Arbeiderbladet 1979-1981 and lectured in economics at the University of Oslo 1989-1990.

The Labour party is the senior partner in the coalition with 61 seats in the 169-seat parliament, followed by the Socialists with 15 seats and the Center party with 11 seats. In a 19-strong cabinet, the Socialists hold five cabinet posts, the Center party four and Labour 10. This is the first government with a majority in Norway’s parliament since a Conservative-led coalition from 1983-85.

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The Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg.Photo: The Office of the Prime Minister.