Finland's 34-year-old transportation minister and lawmaker, Sanna Marin is set to become the world’s youngest sitting prime minister and Finlands third female government leader when she is sworn in this week.
On Sunday, Marin won a vote among Social Democrat lawmakers 32-29 over rival Antti Lindtman and will be replacing outgoing Prime Minister Antti Rinne, who resigned on Tuesday after coalition partner the Centre Party said it had lost confidence in him over his handling of a postal workers' strike.
PM-elect Sanna Marin told reporters that she has "a lot of work ahead to rebuild trust,"
"I have never thought about my age or gender, I think of the reasons I got into politics and those things for which we have won the trust of the electorate,"
The Social Democrats which is the largest in Finland can appoint any party member to the post of prime minister.
Marin has been the party’s vice chairwoman, a lawmaker since 2015 and served as until this week as the minister for transport and communications. According to Finland’s biggest newspaper Helsingin Sanomat and the Ilta-Sanomat tabloid, Marin will become the world’s youngest sitting prime minister. Finland currently holds the European Union’s rotating presidency until the end of the year. Lawmakers are likely to approve the appointment of Marin and her new government quickly so she can represent Finland at the Dec. 12-13 EU leaders’ summit in Brussels.
On Sunday, Social Democrats and the four other coalition parties said they are committed to the government program agreed upon after the April election and will continue in Marin’s new government. The new government will still have a comfortable majority of 117 seats at the 200-seat Eduskunta or Parliament. Social Democrats said Sunday they’re seeking to have Rinne, a former trade union leader, become the parliament’s vice speaker. He also plans to stay on as the Social Democrats’ chairman until a party congress next summer.
Marin isn't the only world leader in her 30s, though: Ukranian premier Oleksiy Honcharuk is 35 and New Zealand's Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is 39.
The five major parties in Finland's parliament are now all led by women, four of whom are in their 30s: Li Andersson, 32, is the leader of the Left Alliance; Maria Ohisalo, 34, leads the Green League; the Centre Party is led by Katri Kulmuni, 32; and Anna-Maja Henriksson, 55, is leader of the Swedish People's Party of Finland.