Finland's next prime minister has chosen the head of the populist Finns Party to be the foreign minister in a three-member ruling coalition, the first time the maverick EU-skeptic party is in the government.

Center Party leader Juha Sipila, who was tasked with forming a new government after his party won the April 17 election, chose the current conservative Prime Minister Alexander Stubb to be the country's new finance minister.

The government formation talks Wednesday focused on policy that Sipila called "painful decisions," including billions of euros of welfare cuts and reforms to restore Finland's ailing economy that has been in recession for three years.

Party officials are expected to approve the policies before Sipila officially announces the formation of the coalition on Friday.