Sunday

18th Apr 2021

Tied result in Estonian election

The left-leaning Estonian Centre Party won the general elections in Estonia on Sunday as predicted. However, according to initial results,it will only get 28 places in the 101-member parliament, the same amount of seats as the newcomer Res Publica. The new centre-right Res Publica was expected to do well, but few predicted it would gain as much as 24,6 per cent of the vote. The winning party gained less than one per cent more, at 25,4.

The centre-right Reform Party came in third, with a possible 19 places in the parliament. The Estonian Centre Party and Reform Party have been together in a coalition before but this time it is unlikely that they would join forces again, mainly because of differences over the tax system. The Reform Party campaigned for reducing taxes down to 20 per cent, while the winning party promised their voters a progressive tax system.

Centre-right parties to have majority

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The Res Publica and the Reform Party with smaller parties like Pro Patria Union's and Moderates are likely to form a government together, leaving the winning party in the opposition. The collection of centre-right parties won a combined 60 seats and centre-left only 41.

Res Publica and the Reform Party both believe that one of the most important priorities for Estonia is to join the European Union. The Estonian Centre Party on the other hand said before the elections that they would reveal their official point of view on EU in June, after the party congress.

Centre Party not sure about EU

The leader of Estonian Centre Party Edgar Savisaar said on Saturday that his party wants to first make sure what kind of EU Estonia is about to join. "I also have doubts," Mr Savisaar said in a debate with possible future prime ministers.

Estonia is going to vote on EU membership later this year, on 14 September.

Only 58 per cent of Estonians took part of the elections. Six parties managed to get at least 5 per cent of votes, the threshold required to secure a place in the parliament. According to the first, non-official results, the People's Union got 13 seats, Pro Patria Union 7 and the Moderates 6. Estonian president Arnold Rüütel has now two weeks to nominate a prime minister, who would then have to form the cabinet to be approved by the government

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