The party groups of the Pirate Party, the Social Democratic Alliance, the Reform Party and Bright Future agreed at a meeting yesterday that they were ready to begin formal coalition talks led by Left-Green Movement Leader Katrín Jakobsdóttir, RÚV reports. Party representatives met twice over the weekend at informal meetings.
Party policy groups with representatives from all five parties will spend the next few days reviewing the basis for a potential coalition. Katrín told reporters she was optimistic, but, at the same time, realistic. “We enter this with complete integrity, and it’s a matter of responsibility to try to reach an agreement,” she stated.
Other party leaders said they were cautiously optimistic about being able to reach an agreement and pointed out that some issues might prove difficult to negotiate.
Katrín is the second party leader to be given the mandate to form a government following the October 29 parliamentary election. It was given to her after Independence Party Leader Bjarni Benediktsson unsuccessfully attempted to form a three-party coalition government with the Reform Party and Bright Future.
If the effort to form a five-party government proves successful, the parties will have 34 seats combined in parliament, compared with 29 MPs from the Independence Party and the Progressive party, which make up the departing government. Interestingly, three of the five parties are relatively new; Bright Future and the Pirate Party were established in 2012, and the Reform Party only last spring.