SKOPJE, Jan. 30 (Xinhua) -- Macedonia's designated Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski has failed to form a new government, as the deadline expired at midnight Sunday.
Gruevski's party VMRO-DPMNE did not reach an agreement to form a coalition with the Democratic Union for Integration (DUI).
Since the DUI, with its 10 parliamentarian seats, was crucial for forming a government majority, Gruevski is expected to return the mandate to form the government to the Macedonian President Gjorge Ivanov on Monday.
"We reviewed five possible options, but we have not reached a decision because we don't have enough arguments to choose any of these options," DUI spokesperson Bujar Osmani announced on late night Sunday after days of intense consultations in the party's headquarters.
"In the coming period we will keep debating in order to reach a decision that will be most favorable for the citizens of the Republic of Macedonia," said Osmani.
Gruevski had 20 days to form a government majority. At the Dec. 11 premature parliamentary elections his party won 51 seats, but needs 61 votes to secure a parliamentary majority.
"VMRO-DPMNE now feels that new elections will be the mature solution with a purpose to end the crisis and put the focus on the needed reform priorities," VMRO-DPMNE said in a written statement issued right after midnight on Monday. "Any other solution will only bring new conflicts and problems in the divided society."
The Macedonian Constitution does not offer a precise answer to the question of what happens if the designated prime minister does not manage to form a government. Possible options are that the mandate will go to the party that was second by the number of votes won at the elections or the country will progress toward new elections.