Stockholm (AP) - Sweden's future queen will marry her boyfriend next year, the royal court announced Tuesday, ending years of speculation on whether the couple would tie the knot.
The court announced the engagement of Crown Princess Victoria to Daniel Westling after informing government ministers Tuesday at Stockholm's waterfront royal palace.
The wedding will take place "in the early summer of 2010," the royal court said.
Swedish media flashed the announcement with bold headlines on their Web sites and the Scandinavian nation's major broadcasters reported the news live from outside the palace.
Victoria, 31, is first in line to succeed her father, King Carl XVI Gustaf, to the Swedish throne. She and Westling, a 35-year-old gym owner, became a couple in 2002. Wedding rumors have mounted since July last year, when Westling moved to the royal family's residence outside Stockholm.
The court said Westling would assume the title Prince Daniel, Duke of Vastergotland, after the wedding.
The king had given his consent to the marriage and requested the approval of the government, in line with Sweden's constitution, the court said.
The duties of the figurehead monarch, who has no political power, revolve mostly around representing the nation and receiving foreign dignitaries. He also hands out the prestigious Nobel Prizes every year.
Royal expert Jenny Alexandersson, who has reported on the crown princess for celebrity magazine Svensk Damtidning since 2003, said the wedding would be "fantastic" for Sweden, especially considering the current economic crisis.
"The fact that Sweden's heir to the throne will marry will give echoes around the world. It will be a great big wedding with more than 1,000 guests, including representatives from all big royal families," Alexandersson said.
She also said the wedding would be important for the Swedish monarchy.
"We have seen in our neighboring countries Norway and Denmark that the popularity of the monarchy has risen at times of royal weddings," she said.