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Progressive Party
Chairperson Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson
Vice chairperson Birkir Jón Jónsson
Founded 1916
Headquarters Hverfisgata 33
101 Reykjavík
Ideology Liberalism,
International affiliation Liberal International
European affiliation None
Official colours Green
Seats in the Althing
Politics of Iceland
Political parties

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The Progressive Party (Icelandic: Framsóknarflokkurinn) is an agrarian, liberal and centrist party in Iceland. The party is a member of the Liberal International. Current chairman of the party is Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson. He was elected on January 18, 2009. His predecessor was Valgerður Sverrisdóttir, who only served as chairman for two months. Her predecessor, Guðni Ágústsson, who, as a vice-chairman became chairman when the previous chairman, Jón Sigurðsson, resigned after the Progressive Party suffered great losses in the 2007 election. Jón's predecessor as party leader was Halldór Ásgrímsson, chairman 1994-2006. Halldór was Prime Minister of Iceland 2004-2006.

The party had been in a government coalition partner to the conservative Independence Party in the period 1995-2007. From 1995 to 2004, it participated in the coalition as the junior partner under the premiership of Independence Party leader Davíð Oddsson, but the two parties agreed after the 2003 legislative elections that Halldór would become Prime Minister in September 2004. He took office on September 15, but later announced his intention to resign on June 5, 2006 following the party's poor results in the 2006 municipal elections. The coalition remained allied with the Independence Party chairman, Geir H. Haarde, as Prime Minister. The Progressive Party leader Jón Sigurðsson was minister of Industry and Commerce, until a coalition of the Independence Party and the Alliance took over after the elections in 2007.

Though the Progressive Party was originally founded as an agrarian party and still finds most of its support from farmers and fishermen, it has gradually adopted the position of a liberal party in the political spectrum. It was founded in 1916 as a merger of two agrarian parties, the Farmers' Party (Bændaflokkur) and the Independent Farmers (Óháðir bændur).

Throughout Iceland's history as a self-governing and independent nation, the Progressive Party has most often been the second largest political party in the country. It has often joined government coalitions with either the Independence Party on the right, or with left-wing parties.

In January 2009, it decided to change its party line on joining the European Union from being opposed to being in favour of EU accession.[1]

Recent elections

In the 2007 elections, the party dropped five seats, down from twelve. The coalition only held a one-seat majority in the Althing, and the Independence Party formed a government with the Social Democratic Alliance with the deal being signed on May 22, returning the Progressive Party to the opposition. When a left-wing minority government was formed in February 2009, in the wake of the Icelandic financial crisis, the Progressive Party agreed to defend it from a no-confidence vote, but did not form part of the governing coalition.[2]

In the 2009 elections, the Progressive Party fared somewhat better, securing 14.8% of the vote, and increasing its number of seats from seven to nine. It remained in opposition, however, with a coalition of the Social Democratic Alliance and the Left-Green Movement continuing to govern with an increased majority.[3]


6 of its 12 chairmen have been prime ministers of Iceland:

In addition to those, Steingrímur Steinþórsson headed a government from 1950 to 1953.

See also


External links



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