All the other Nordic countries — Finland, Denmark, Norway and Iceland — have previously elected female national leaders.
She holds a master’s degree in Economics from the Stockholm School of Economics and has served as Sweden’s finance minister since 2014.
She is also the second woman to head up the center-left Social Democrats party, according to Sweden’s Twitter account.
Swedish foreign affairs minister Ann Linde was one of the first to congratulate Andersson, remarking on Twitter that there is “no doubt” that she will “continue to be remarkable.”
Already facing major hurdles
Her predecessor Löfven governed by performing a complex juggling act to secure support from both the Left and Center parties in parliament, even though they are not part of the coalition government.
But the Center Party is worried by the deal with the Left Party and has said it will not back Andersson’s government in a vote on a finance bill proposed by three opposition parties that could take place as early as 10:00 a.m. ET Wednesday.
“We cannot support a budget from a government which is moving far to the left, which we think the incoming government is doing,” Center Party leader Annie Loof told reporters.
Andersson now faces the prospect of governing on spending priorities determined by the center-right.
Löfven, who stepped down earlier this month to give Andersson a chance to boost support for the party before a general election in September next year, said he would not continue if he lost the budget vote.
Even if she manages to consolidates her power base and negotiate the budget crisis, Andersson faces significant challenges.
Gang violence and shootings blight life in many suburbs of the capital, Stockholm, and other major cities.
The Covid-19 pandemic exposed gaps in the much-vaunted welfare state with the death rate in Sweden much higher than in neighboring Nordic countries and the government needs to speed up the shift to a “green” economy if it is to meet its climate change goals.