Jan P. Syse

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Jan P. Syse
Jan P. Syse.JPG
Prime Minister of Norway
In office
16 October 1989 – 3 November 1990
Monarch Olav V
Preceded by Gro Harlem Brundtland
Succeeded by Gro Harlem Brundtland
Personal details
Born (1930-11-25)25 November 1930
Nøtterøy, Norway
Died 17 September 1997(1997-09-17) (aged 66)
Oslo, Norway
Political party Conservative Party
Spouse(s) Else Walstad
Children 2
Religion Lutheran

About this sound Jan Peder Syse  (25 November 1930 – 17 September 1997) was a lawyer and Norwegian politician from the Conservative Party. He was Prime Minister of Norway from 1989 to 1990. He also served as Minister of Industry from 1983 to 1985. He served in the Norwegian parliament for over 25 years until his sudden death from a cerebral hemorrhage in 1997.

Early life and career

Syse was born in Nøtterøy in the county of Vestfold. His father, Peter Syse, was a local politician and dental surgeon.

He earned his examen artium in 1949 and his degree in law in 1957. He was politically active as a student, serving as chair of Den Konservative Studenterforening, Det Norske Studentersamfund, and the construction committee for Chateau Neuf.

His initial professional experience was as an attorney and manager for the deep sea shipping company Wilh. Wilhelmsen. He worked for Wilhelmsen at various times throughout his career, and was also employed as the editor for Wilhelmsen's newsletter, Skib-rederi.

Jan P. Syse met Else Walstad while they both were students at the University of Oslo in 1955, and they were married in 1959. They have two sons, philosopher Henrik and Christian, a diplomat.

Political career

After being a member of the national council for the Conservative Party since 1957, he started his elected political career in 1963 when he was elected to the Oslo city council, where he served two terms.

He was elected into the Storting as a deputy representative in 1965. He started his term as a full voting member in 1969 to replace Kåre Willoch who was a member of the cabinet Borten. Syse served on the Judiciary, Administration, Finance, extended Foreign Affairs and Constitution, and Constitutional committees throughout his parliamentary career. He was also sent as a parliamentary delegate to the United Nations General Assembly, Nordic Council, Inter-Parliamentary Union, and other international bodies.

Syse was State Secretary to the Ministry of Justice from 1 November 1970 to 17 March 1971 in the non-Socialist coalition government led by Per Borten. He was Minister of Industry in the second cabinet Willoch from 16 September 1983 to 4 October 1985, and prime minister with the Syse Cabinet from 16 October 1989 to 3 November 1990.

Syse was President of the Lagting 1993–1997.

Political legacy

Syse was well liked and respected among political allies and adversaries alike, known for his passion for the viability of non-socialist cooperation and practical results of his work.[who?] He worked for cooperation within the Nordic region and especially to integrate the Baltic states within the Nordic Council. Known for his rhetorical skills,[who?] his son has published a book that describes his speeches and style.


Political offices
Preceded by
Gro Harlem Brundtland
Prime Minister of Norway
Succeeded by
Gro Harlem Brundtland