Stockholm [Sweden] : Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Lofven of the Social Democrats party on Sunday announced that he will step down as party leader in November.
A year ahead of Sweden’s next election, Lofven announced his resignation at his annual summer speech, held in Akersberga near Stockholm, reported a Swedish local daily.
“The decision has matured over time. I have been party chairman for ten years, prime minister for seven. These years have been amazing. But everything comes to an end. I want to give my successor the best of conditions,” he said.
Former trade union chief Lofven took the reins of the Social Democrats in 2012 and led his party to two successful elections in 2014 and 2018.
Lofven, 64, came into politics after heading up one of Sweden’s most powerful trade unions, IF Metall, following a career as a welder.
He is known for his negotiation skills, and he’s had ample opportunity to flex them during his tenure, but the party has been struggling in the polls.
Just months after taking power, his party failed to push its budget through, and Lofven called a snap election, but this was cancelled after crisis talks, reported the local newspaper.
In the next election in 2018, his party got its worst result in over a century, and it took four months of negotiations before a new government was put together.
Earlier this summer, he became Sweden’s first Prime Minister in history to lose a no-confidence vote, following a row over rent controls.
However, the opposition was unable to form a viable coalition to take over, and so Lofven returned to the helm again, only two weeks later. (ANI)