Romanian President Klaus Iohannis granted Social Democrat Sorin Grindeanu a mandate to create and lead a new government, ending a standoff after blocking a member of the party from becoming the first woman Muslim premier in the European Union.
Grindeanu, 43, was communication minister under former Prime Minister Victor Ponta and is a long-time member of the Social Democrats, who won Dec. 11 elections. The parliament is scheduled to vote on the new government on Jan. 4, Liviu Dragnea, parliament speaker and Social Democratic leader, said on Friday. Grindeanu is sure to win the vote, given his party’s majority in the assembly with their junior ally ALDE. This paves the way for the Social Democrats to move ahead with planned tax cuts and wage increases, which the EU’s executive arm has warned may push the budget deficit above the bloc’s limit.