Published November 21, 2016
The Progressive Party will not be a part of the proposed ruling coalition, but five parties spanning from the centre-right to the left will begin formal cross-platform talks.
RÚV reports that the Left-Greens, the Pirate Party, the Social Democrats, Bright Future and the Reform Party have begun formal cross-platform talks for the formation of a new ruling coalition. It is expected that these talks will be expedited, as parliament’s Christmas break is not far off.
If these parties are able to form a joint platform for Iceland’s next government, they would have a parliamentary majority of 34 seats in the 63-seat parliament, relegating the Independence Party and the Progressive Party to the opposition.
As reported, coalition talks between the Independence Party, the Reform Party and Bright Future broke down last week, as they could not reach an agreement on a common platform; most notably, regarding the management of fisheries and the question of a public referendum on accession to the European Union.
Bjarni told RÚV after meeting with the president that he had been hoping for a broader base of support for the coalition, but ultimately this was not tenable.
Reform Party chair Benedikt Jóhannsson said that it had been Bjarni who broke up the talks, who did not want to bend on a number of key issues, and furthermore showed “great interest” in bring the Progressive Party into the proposed coalition.
As it stands now, the announcement of a joint platform should be pending over the coming days.