President Dalia Grybauskaitė says that the Lithuanian Social Democratic Party's (LSDP) decision on whether or not to stay in the ruling coalition with the Lithuanian Farmers and Greens Union (LFGU) will have no major impact on the parliament's work.
President Dalia Grybauskaitė
© DELFI / Karolina Pansevič

"Regardless of whether the Social Democratic Party opts to remain in the formal union or coalition, this is unlikely to have a major impact on (the Seimas') work, because even while being in the formal coalition, the LFGU sought other partners on individual issues and communicated and tackled certain issues together with the opposition," she said in an interview with LRT Radio aired on Thursday morning.

The president believes that the Social Democrats would support some of the government's proposals even if they pulled out of the formal coalition and that the LFGU could also have backing from the opposition on some issues.

"For the first time in the history of our state, we are likely to have a formal minority (government), but de facto a normally functioning majority," she said.

Gintautas Paluckas, the new LSDP leader, and the majority of the party's branches are in favor of withdrawing from the coalition, but the Social Democrats' political group in the Seimas and their ministers want the party to stay in government.

Andrius Palionis, head of the LSDP political group in the Seimas, said after Wednesday's meeting with Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis that the two ruling parties' political groups in the Seimas planned to sign a memorandum on cooperation during the parliament's upcoming fall session.

Skvernelis said that the groups would set out in the agreement the key tasks for the session, including passing next year's budget, tax changes and measures to reduce social exclusion and poverty.

Paluckas described the agreement as "a slap in the face" to the party.

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