Sanna Marin is the world’s youngest serving Prime Minister

Sanna Marin

Finland’s ruling Social Democratic Party has voted to make 34-year-old Sanna Marin the youngest-serving Prime Minister in the world.

Sanna Marin also becomes the third female to be Prime Minister of Finland, the nation that borders Sweden, Norway and Russia, and has a population of 5.5 million.

She was Finland’s transport minister and succeeds Antti Rinne, who resigned last week after a party in the coalition government publicly rebuked his handling of a national postal strike.

Antti Rinne Sanna Marin

Sanna Marin’s party is the largest in the ruling coalition. Four other parties in Finland’s coalition government are also led by women: the Left Alliance is led by Li Anderson, 32; the Green League is led by 34-year-old Maria Ohisalo; the Centre Party’s head is Katri Kulmuni, 32; and Anna-Maja Henriksson, 55, is leader of the Swedish People’s party.

“We have a lot of work ahead to rebuild trust,” Marin said after winning a narrow vote among the party leadership, Reuters reported.

“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.”

Sanna Marin, Finland, Prime Minister

Sanna Marin succeeds Ukraine’s 35-year-old Oleksiy Honcharuk as the youngest-serving prime minister. North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong-un is reported to also be 35.

She was head of the city council of her industrial hometown of Tampere at the age of 27 and will take over a country that is in the middle of a wave of strikes that has halted production at Finland’s largest companies. The strike has reportedly cost a combined €500 million (US$550 million) in revenue.

Finland holds the rotating presidency of the European Union until the end of the year, playing a central role in efforts to hammer out a new budget for the bloc.

Marin will represent Finland at the EU leaders’ summit in Brussels, Belgium, on 12 December.

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