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How are the local elections shaping up in Norway's biggest cities?

Frazer Norwell
Frazer Norwell - [email protected]
How are the local elections shaping up in Norway's biggest cities?
An interesting election race can be expected in five of Norway's largest cities. Pictured is the city of Stavanger from above. Photo by Oleksii T on Unsplash

The race for local leadership is intensifying in Norway's five biggest cities ahead of local elections on September 11th, with a dead heat predicted in some areas.

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Three of Norway's biggest cities could be set for a change of local leadership in the county and municipal elections on September 11th, according to an overview of polling by Norwegian newswire NTB.

The overview, based on an average of local polling, predicts a change of city council in Oslo, Bergen and Stavanger. All three would, therefore, change from a Labour-led city council to a Conservative Party-led one.

In Oslo, where city governance is handled by the Labour Party, Socialist Left Party, and Green Party, the opposing Conservative Party, Liberal Party, Progress Party and Christian Democratic Party would receive 31 seats on the city council if they decided on a coalition. More than 30 seats are required for a majority in Oslo.

The current city council leadership is polling a return of 21 seats, meaning they would need to convince the Red Party and Centre Party to form a coalition if they are to have any chance of remaining in power.

There is set to be a dead heat in Bergen, with a slim lead for a blue block consisting of the Conservative Party, Progress Party, Liberal Party and Christian Democratic Party. Together, the four parties would receive 34 seats on the city council – one more than is required to form a majority.

Based on the average polling from NTB, the current minority city government are set to receive 16 seats.

However, local publication Bregens Tidende reports that the Conservative Party and Labour Party will be forced to cooperate with many smaller parties to secure a majority. The newspaper reports that it is unlikely a majority will be secured by a coalition of less than five parties.

Three polls from August indicate that the Conservative's hopes of taking charge of the city council after 20 years of Labour leadership are set to be dashed.

The current four-party coalition of the Labour Party, Socialist Left Party, Green Party and Centre Party will probably need to bring the Red Party aboard to cling onto a slim majority.

The Conservative Party, Progress Party, Liberal Party and Christian Democratic Party are on course to receive 28 of the 34 seats required to get a majority.

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Things look better for the Conservative Party in Stavanger, though. There, the Conservative Party, Progress Party, Liberal Party and Christian Democratic Party will be able to form a right-wing block by returning around 38 seats – four more than is required for a majority.

The current governing parties in Stavanger (Labour, Socialist Left, Centre, Green, Red and People's) are on course to secure around 29 seats.

Tromsø, northern Norway, is set to see a closely contested battle to get the necessary 22 of 43 spots to secure a majority.

The local red-green coalition of the Labour Party, Socialist Left Party, Green Party and Centre Party may only end up with 21 seats, however. This means they will need to secure the support of the Red Party, which polling suggests will receive three seats.

The right-wing block in Tromsø is forecast to obtain around 17 seats.

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