Latvia’s new PM nominee begins canvassing support to form government

Aldis Gobzems, the leader of Latvia’s populist KPV party, began piecing together a government coalition on November 27 after President Raimonds Vejonis designated him as possibly the next prime minister of the Baltic state.

Gobzems is the second PM-designate after a government formation mission of Janis Bordans, the leader of the New Conservative Party (JKP) failed. Bordans could not overcome party divisions in a fragmented parliament that emerged as a result of the general election held on October 6.

“Today we will begin collecting votes in the parliament for the approval of a new government, asking all partners to be very serious of the process,” Gobzems said, according to BNN.

Gobzems intends to talk to all parties that won seats in the parliament except for the winner, the leftist Harmony party, which has been traditionally sidelined in the government talks. The rest of Latvia’s political class sees Harmony, whose electorate is mostly Latvia’s sizeable Russian minority, as too close to Moscow and therefore a potential agent of hostile influence.

The PM-designate has two weeks to carry out the task of forming a new government, which, President Vejonis said earlier, needs to strengthen the “security of our country and of the financial system and build a balanced state budget.”

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