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Marin to be youngest sitting PM in the world

The current Minister for Transport and Communications will also be Finland's youngest ever PM.

Sanna Marin
Sanna Marin's coalition partners in Finland's five-party government are also all chaired by women. Image: Heikki Saukkomaa / Lehtikuva

When Finland's parliament votes in the next few days on the Social Democratic Party's nomination of Sanna Marin as prime minister, the 34-year-old current Minister of Transport and Communications is likely to become the world's youngest serving head of government.

Currently that title is held by the 35-year-old Ukrainian Prime Minister Oleksiy Honcharuk, who took office in May.

Marin will also become the youngest prime minister in Finnish history, as she is two years younger than the Centre Party's Esko Aho, who became prime minister in April 1991 at the age of 36.

Marin was asked a question about her age as soon as the result of the vote was announced at the Social Democratic Party Council in Helsinki on Sunday evening.

"I will respond in the same way as before. I have not actually ever thought about my age or my gender, I think of the reasons I got into politics and those things for which we have won the trust of the electorate," Marin said.

There is no official list of the youngest Heads of State or Prime Ministers, but after Marin and Honcharuk, the list of the next youngest includes North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un (36), El Salvador President Nayib Bukele (38) and New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern (39).

Marin's coalition partners all led by women

Marin's coalition partners in Finland’s five-party government are all led by women - four of whom are under 35 years of age; 32-year-old current Minister of Economic Affairs -- and soon-to-be Minister of Finance -- Katri Kulmuni is the leader of the Centre Party, 34-year-old Maria Ohisalo heads up the Green Party and serves as Interior Minister, 32-year-old Minister of Education Li Andersson is the Left Alliance chair, and 55-year-old Anna-Maja Henriksson is the Swedish People’s Party leader and Minister of Justice.

Marin has risen very quickly through the political ranks since she became head of Tampere City Council at the age of 27, and she is currently into her second term as a member of parliament. She already has some experience in the top job as she led the party during the previous incumbent Antti Rinne's sick leave last winter.

Marin set out the vision for her premiership in a letter to SDP members on Sunday, as she wrote "Finland is in the midst of an exceptional situation. The main focus for Social Democrats is to continue our work in building a fairer and more egalitarian society."

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