RABAT (AFP) - Morocco's King Mohammed VI on Tuesday named the head of the Islamist party that won last week's election as prime minister to lead talks on the formation of a coalition government, the palace said. Abdelilah Benkirane, head of the moderate Islamist Justice and Development Party (PJD), was summoned to the palace after results showed his party won the biggest block of votes in Friday's ballot. It was the first election in the north African country since the monarch introduced constitutional reforms as the Arab Spring swept through the region. The PJD won 107 of the 395 seats in parliament, a result that set the stage for it to become the first Islamist party at the head of a coalition government in Morocco. An AFP journalist witnessed Benkirane taking the oath after a brief meeting with the king. Under a new constitution adopted in July as the popular uprisings gripped other Arab states, the king had to choose a prime minister from the winning party instead of naming whoever he pleases, as in the past. After meeting the monarch, "Benkirane will start talks with the parties that should make up the coalition," PJD parliamentary leader Lahcen Daoudi had told AFP Monday. An Islamist party has never been allowed in government before, but the PJD has sworn allegiance to the monarchy. Since the PJD will have to govern in a coalition with several other parties, it is not expected to make radical changes to policy. The 57-year-old Benkirane, who sports close-cropped white hair and a matching beard, has acknowledged that his party would have to tailor its programme to appease its coalition partners. "But the nub of our programme and of those who will govern with us will have a double axis, democracy and good governance," he told France 24 television on Saturday. The PJD captured just eight seats in the first election it contested in 1997, but has since surged in popularity. It scooped 42 seats in 2002 elections, the first of Mohammed VI's reign, and then increased its share in 2007 when it finished second with 47 seats. The party initially focused on social issues, such as opposition to summer music festivals and the sale of alcohol, but has shifted to topics with broader voter appeal like the fight against corruption and high unemployment. In the latest campaign, it promised to cut poverty in half and raise the minimum wage by 50 percent. Three parties in the outgoing government -- the independent Istiqlal, with 60 seats, the liberal Rally of Independents, with 52, and the Socialist Union of Popular Forces (USFP), with 39 -- have declared themselves ready for talks with the PJD, according to Moroccan press. Newspapers speculated heavily on the new team, which they said should include independent figures and technocrats. The Qoutla three-party coalition in the current government met on Monday to find a common policy on joining the PJD in power, the daily Al-Massaa reported. Formed in 1992 to press for constitutional reform, this coalition of the Istiqlal, the USFP and the Party of Progress and Socialism (formerly Communist) holds 164 seats in the new parliament. Benkirane has already said he will talk to the Qoutla.