Spain's conservative People's Party (PP) won a surprise absolute majority in regional elections in Andalusia on Sunday, according to official vote counts.
The PP, led by regional President Juanma Moreno, won 58 seats in the regional parliament in Seville, the electoral commission announced on Sunday evening.
The surprise result represents an increase of 32 seats on the last elections four years ago. For a majority, 55 seats are required.
Meanwhile, the socialist PSOE of Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez - which governed Andalusia for decades until 2018 - won just 30 seats, coming in a distant second.
The PSOE had been performing badly in opinion polls in the run-up to the vote, with analysts contending that it underperformed in its role as the official opposition following years in government.
The right-wing populist Vox party came in third with 14 seats. Ahead of the vote, Moreno had not ruled out a coalition with Vox, should his party fall short of the 55 seats required for a majority.
High unemployment rate
Meanwhile, Moreno's current coalition partner, the liberal Ciudadanos (Citizens), failed to win any seats in the new parliament, losing all 21 seats it won in the last election.
Leftist alliances Pro Andalucía and Adelante Andalucía took five and two seats, respectively.
The campaign in Andalusia, Spain's most populous autonomous community, was dominated by the high unemployment rate, which currently stands at almost 20%, some 6 percentage points above the national average.
Coronavirus restrictions, climate change and migration were other issues hotly debated ahead of the vote.