Finland's government to resign after healthcare reform fails

Faith Castro
March 10, 2019

Finnish Prime Minister Juha Sipila officially Friday offered his government's resignation to the country's president after it failed to put through a social and health care reform package, saying he was "hugely disappointed", the president's office announced.

Sipila was appointed prime minister by the Finnish parliament in May 2015 after his party won the general election.

"Prime Minister Juha Sipila has submitted the resignation of the government to President of the Republic Sauli Niinisto. today", Niinisto's office said in an announcement made just five weeks ahead of legislative elections scheduled for April 14.

"The collapse of the reform is a massive disappointment", Sipila said at a press conference in Helsinki on Friday.

Sipala's three-party governing coalition held 123 out of 200 seats in parliament.

Financial constraints are colliding with the healthcare costs imposed by Finland's fast-ageing population.

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The government's resignation is taking place against the backdrop of unsuccessful attempts to reform the country's health care system and social services.

Several governments have tried to push through reforms in different forms over the past 12 years.

The Centre Party chair said that his coalition partners understood his reasons for proposing the government's resignation. Sipila's center-right government resigned Friday after failing to push through a planned social and health reform.

"This reform is crucial to the sustainability of public finances", Jan von Gerich, chief analyst at Nordea, wrote on Twitter.

There has been a hard fought struggle for the wide-reaching reform for over a decade, dividing successive governments.

Democratic forces of Europe will win back the trust of the people by making decisions and by implementing them, at home and here in Brussels, Finland's Juha Sipilä on Thursday (31 January) told European Union lawmakers in Brussels.

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