Norway’s PM to reshuffle cabinet ahead of election year: report

By Reuters - December 20, 2016
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Norwegian PM Erna Solberg visits Klobben island during the annual informal summer meeting of the Nordic prime ministers in Saltvik, the Aland Islands, Finland September 27, 2016. (Vesa Moilanen / Lehtikuva via Reuters)
Norwegian PM Erna Solberg visits Klobben island during the annual informal summer meeting of the Nordic prime ministers in Saltvik, the Aland Islands, Finland September 27, 2016. (Vesa Moilanen / Lehtikuva via Reuters)

OSLO — Norway‘s Conservative Prime Minister Erna Solberg will reshuffle her cabinet on Tuesday, replacing at least three ministers nine months before the next general election, public broadcaster NRK reported, quoting unnamed sources.

The minority government of the Conservatives and the anti-immigration Progress Party, which rules with the backing of two small centrist parties in parliament, has lagged the centre-left opposition in recent opinion polls.

EU Affairs Minister Elisabeth Aspaker of the Conservative Party will step down, NRK said, while adding it was not clear who would take up the post.

NRK and other news organizations on Sunday reported that Oil and Energy Minister Tord Lien would leave in favor of Terje Soeviknes, a popular small-town mayor, while Justice Minister Anders Anundsen would be replaced by Per-Willy Amundsen, a junior minister.

Norway is western Europe’s top producer of oil and natural gas, and the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy manages the government’s majority stake in Statoil.

Solberg’s office declined to comment.

Reporting by Terje Solsvik and Stine Jacobsen.