Center sees highest membership growth among parliamentary parties in 2016 ({{commentsTotal}})

Delegates at the Center Party's 2016 Congress in Paide. Saturday, Nov. 5, 2016.
Delegates at the Center Party's 2016 Congress in Paide. Saturday, Nov. 5, 2016. Source: (Rene Suurkaev/ERR)

The Center Party, Estonia's largest party by membership, also saw the highest growth in membership in 2016, with 766 new members joining the party this year. Junior coalition partner Pro Patria and Res Publica Union (IRL), in contrast, gained just 12 new members this year.

The Center Party, who has led as Estonia's largest party for years, has a current membership of 14,617, of which 766 joined tthis year, 287 last year and 542 in 2014, reported daily Postimees (link in Estonian).

Reform follows in overall size with 12,432 members, of which 108 joined this year, 91 last year and 305 in 2014.

Third in overall size is IRL, with a total membership of 9,177, of which 12 joined this year, 175 last year — of which 163 joined in the month preceding the party's most recent convention, at which elections were held for party chairman and leadership positions — and 254 in 2014 — of which 97 joined shortly before internal elections.

According to data from Estonia's registry of non-profits and foundations, the Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE) has 8,086 members total, of which 594 joined this year, 359 last year and 100 in 2014, when EKRE was not yet represented in the Riigikogu.

The Social Democratic Party (SDE), a junior coalition partner, has 5,993 members in all, of which 90 joined the party this year, 80 last year and 178 in 2014.

The smallest parliamentary party in terms of total membership is the Free Party, founded in fall 2014, which has a total of just 684 members, of which 48 joined this year and 90 joined last year.

Editor: Editor: Aili Vahtla