Estonia: Political structure

Content Type
Country Data and Maps
Institution
Economist Intelligence Unit
Abstract
No abstract is available.
Topic
Politics, Summary, Political structure
Political Geography
Estonia

Official name

Republic of Estonia

Legal system

In 1992 the Estonian State Assembly, the Riigikogu, declared legal continuity between the 1918-40 republic and the current state. A new constitution was adopted in 1992 by referendum

National legislature

Unicameral assembly, the Riigikogu, of 101 members. All members are directly elected, but parties need a minimum of 5% of the vote to secure representation. Members can subsequently sit as independents. The Riigikogu's term is four years

Electoral system

Proportional representation. There is universal suffrage for Estonian citizens (as defined by the reinstated 1938 citizenship law) over the age of 18, whether resident in Estonia or abroad. Other residents, mainly Russians and other minorities, cannot vote in general elections but are able to vote in municipal elections. The president is indirectly elected

National elections

Last elections: presidential (October 2016); parliamentary (March 2019). The next presidential election is due to be held in August-September 2021 and the next parliamentary election in March 2023

Head of state

President, currently Kersti Kaljulaid, who was elected in October 2016

National government

A coalition government led by Juri Ratas comprising the Centre Party, the nationalist-populist Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE) and the conservative Isamaa was in power from April 29th 2019 until January 14th 2021. Ms Kaljulaid has asked Kaja Kallas, the leader of the Reform Party, to form the next government. In the meantime, Mr Ratas continues as a caretaker prime minister.

Main political parties

Reform Party; Centre Party; Isamaa (formerly Pro Patria and Res Publica Union); Social Democratic Party (SDE); Free Party; Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE); Estonia 200; Green Party

On January 13th Juri Ratas resigned as prime minister, dissolving the ruling coalition. Mr Ratas will continue in a caretaker capacity until a new government is formed.

Council of Ministers

Prime minister: Juri Ratas (Centre Party)

Key ministers

Culture: Tonis Lukas (Isamaa)

Defence: Juri Luik (Isamaa)

Economy & infrastructure: Taavi Aas (Centre Party)

Education & research: Jaak Aab (Centre Party)

Environment: Rain Epler (EKRE)

Finance: Martin Helme (EKRE)

Foreign affairs: Urmas Reinsalu (Isamaa)

Foreign trade & information technology: Raul Siem (EKRE)

Interior: Alar Laneman (EKRE)

Justice: Raivo Aeg (Isamaa)

Population: Riina Solman (Isamaa)

Public administration: Anneli Ott (Centre Party)

Rural affairs: Arvo Aller (EKRE)

Social affairs: Tanel Kiik (Centre Party)

Central bank governor

Madis Muller

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