The five opposition parties were seen winning 98 of the 169 seats in parliament, enough to unseat the centre-right coalition headed by Conservative Erna Solberg, according to estimates based on advance ballots.
More than 42 percent of the electorate voted in advance.
Støre spoke to jubilant Labour supporters at the party’s election night event and said years of patience have paid off.
“We have waited, we have hoped and worked so hard, and now we can finally say, we did it,” Støre said at the event.
Labour are on course to secure their pre-election dream majority government consisting of themselves and the Socialist Left Party and Centre Party.
“Today folks, we are celebrating a change,” he said of Labour’s return to government after eight years in opposition.
Støre will be Norway’s 36th prime minsiter since 1873.
The Labour Party and Store, who will in all likelihood become the next prime minister, could possibly even win an absolute majority in parliament with its preferred allies, the Centre Party and the Socialist Left.
That would eliminate the need to rely on the support of the two other opposition parties, the Greens and the communist Red Party and facilitate Store’s coalition-building negotiations, which already promise to be long and thorny.
“These results look very very promising, of course they’re still counting the final results but assuming that the prognosis is right, it looks like there is a very strong mandate for change,” Labour’s energy chief Espen Barth Eide told AFP.
‘The Conservative government’s work is finished’
The possibility of a three-party coalition is “exactly the outcome we were hoping for and that means we can start negotiating in the coming days.”
Just after 11pm Prime Minister Erna Solberg conceded defeat.
“The Conservative government’s work is finished for this time around,” Solberg, who has governed since 2013, told supporters. “I want to congratulate Jonas Gahr Store, who now seems to have a clear majority for a change of government.”
Solberg has thanked her supporters and said she was proud of the government’s achievements as eight years of centre-right rule draws to a close.
“If we now look at Norway in the final phase of the corona pandemic, employment is back where it was before the coronavirus,” the outgoing PM said. “We have also encountered major challenges on our watch. The migrant crisis, the fall in oil prices, the coronavirus pandemic,” she added.
The Greens had said they would only support a left-wing government if it vowed an immediate end to oil exploration in Norway, Western Europe’s biggest oil producer.
Store has rejected that ultimatum.
A 61-year-old who campaigned against social inequality, Store has, like the Conservatives, called for a gradual transition away from the oil economy.
The August “code red for humanity” report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) put the issue at the top of the agenda for the election campaign and forced the country to reflect on the oil that has made it immensely rich.
The report energised those who want to get rid of oil, both on the left and, to a lesser extent, the right.
The oil sector accounts for 14 percent of Norway’s gross domestic product, as well as 40 percent of its exports and 160,000 direct jobs.
In addition, the cash cow has helped the country of 5.4 million people amass the world’s biggest sovereign wealth fund, today worth close to 12 trillion kroner (almost 1.2 trillion euros, $1.4 trillion).
A former minister in the governments of Jens Stoltenberg between 2005 and 2013, Store is now expected to begin negotiations with the Centre, which primarily defends the interests of its rural base, and the Socialist Left, which is a strong advocate for environmental issues.
The trio, which already governed together in Stoltenberg’s coalitions, often have diverging positions, notably on the pace at which to exit the oil industry.
The Centrists have also said they would not form a coalition with the Socialist Left.
“I want a society that is more fair, with opportunities for all, and where we try to put everyone to work. That’s the number one priority,” Store said Monday, also calling for a “fair climate policy”.
“We will take all the time we need to talk to the other parties,” he said just before the first projections were released.
Solberg steered the country for eight years — a record for the Conservatives — and through multiple crises, including migration, dropping oil prices and the Covid pandemic.
She was expected to address supporters later Monday.
IRFU must shoulder some blame for state of women’s rugby in Ireland
Watching the distressed female Irish players trying to console each other after Saturday’s heartbreaking, last-ditch defeat by Scotland in Parma which wrenched World Cup qualification aspirations from their grasp made for a very uncomfortable, almost invasive, watch. It was a relief when the RTÉ cameras panned back to the studio.
Watching Sene Naoupu embracing a tearful Ciara Griffin, it’s a wonder that Naoupu had kept her own emotions under control. Representing Ireland at a World Cup in her native New Zealand would have been such a fitting finale to her stellar career.
Q&A: Can foreigners become civil servants in Spain?
For many Spaniards, landing a stable, paper-pushing civil servant position is the dream.
They know it’s not going to be exciting or to make them rich but they see funcionario work as ‘a job for life’ in a country where the unemployment level is notoriously high and much of the job market is based on temporary summer positions in tourism.
They also like the fact that civil servant jobs pay a decent salary compared with the national average and often work fewer hours too.
Funcionario positions in Public Administration, Social Security and Defense were paid an average of €29,580 gross per year in 2020.
This is higher than the national average gross salary of €24,395 per year, according to stats released by Spain’s National Statistics Institute (INE), although that’s not to say some civil servants get paid considerably less than the above mentioned salary.
So, if jobs in the civil service are so popular then how can you get one as a foreigner?
Can foreigners in Spain get civil service jobs?
The main answer is yes, you can get a job in the civil service in Spain as a foreigner, however, there are a few requirements.
Those eligible for civil servant jobs in Spain include EU nationals and those who are married to Spanish or EU nationals. You must currently be married and not divorced.
Children of EU nationals who are eligible to work in Spain (over 16 years old) and who are under 21 can also apply, as can those who are over 21 but who are financially dependent on their parents.
Third-country nationals with work and residence permits in Spain may also apply for civil service jobs.
Does this apply to all jobs in the civil service?
No, the only jobs that foreigners can’t apply for and that you must have Spanish nationality for are those which “directly or indirectly imply participation in the exercise of public power or in the safeguarding of the general interests of the State and Public Administrations” according to the Spanish government.
What qualifications do I need?
While some civil service jobs in Spain require a university degree, there are several that don’t.
Whatever types of qualifications you have, however, will have to go through the homologación (recognition) process so that it’s validated and accepted in Spain. Keep in mind that this can take months, and for non-EU qualification holders even longer.
You may also be required to show other proof and certificates.
According to the Spanish government: “This requirement will not apply to applicants who have obtained recognition of their professional qualification in the field of regulated professions, under the provisions of Community law”.
It also goes without saying that you will need a high level of Spanish to get a job as a civil servant and you may need certificates to prove this too. If you’re trying to get a job in Catalonia for example, you may also be required to know Catalan, as well as Spanish.
What are oposiciones?
Oposiciones are the entrance exams you’ll need to sit to become a civil servant in Spain. Each type of position will have its own requirements, some easier and some harder, which involve a series of exams to test your abilities and suitability.
Some positions may require practical exams, while others such as for the police force will require a physical test.
Photo: FREDERICK FLORIN / AFP
Is there anything that will prevent me from getting a civil servant job in Spain?
Yes, foreigners should not have received disciplinary action or been fired from similar roles in public service in their own countries.
Also, those who are applying for jobs where they will be in contact with children may have to show a police check from their home country to prove that their record is clean.
What are the advantages of being a civil servant in Spain?
- A decent salary
- You have the right to take holiday days in addition to personal days off
- Your social security is automatically deducted, giving you healthcare and pension rights
- It’s a stable job that you are less likely to be made redundant from
- You have the possibility of transferring to different departments
READ ALSO: The downsides of moving to Spain for work
What are the disadvantages of being a civil servant in Spain?
- It’s a big investment in time and effort to get a job as a civil servant
- The need for qualifications, extra tests, and exams
- The extensive number of requirements and paperwork that needs to be filled out
- Complicated systems as well as old-fashioned and bureaucratic work models
- Monotonous work, where you’re unlikely to face new challenges
- Little to no opportunities for remote employment
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