Coalition talks in Sweden as far-right enters parliament

Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt, who will now have to scratch around for new coalition partners, immediately ruled out a tie-up with the anti-immigrant Sweden Democrats and instead looked to bring the Greens on board.

But while Reinfeldt could celebrate an increase in voter support, albeit falling three seats short of an outright majority, it represented a disaster for the left-wing Social Democrats who had been Sweden’s natural party of government for most of the last century.

“I have been clear.... We will not cooperate with or be made dependent on the Sweden Democrats,” Reinfeldt, 45, said in his victory speech on Sunday night, adding that he would seek to shore up support from elsewhere.

“I will turn to the Greens to get broader support in parliament,” he added.

While acknowledging he did not get the result he hoped for, Reinfeldt could still celebrate what Swedish media on Monday described as a historic victory: his coalition is the first right-leaning government to be re-elected in Sweden in nearly a century.

Meanwhile, despite warnings of market jitters if there was no clear win for either main bloc, investors took the result in their stride, focusing on the fact that Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt would remain in power, and on sound growth and public finances.

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