Kallas won't rule out presidency (2)

5/4/2015 2:06 PM
Category: Politics

A veteran Estonian politician, former EU Commissioner for Transport Siim Kallas told ERR that if he's nominated to stand for president, he will not refuse.

It has been speculated for long that Kallas may be one of the candidates, but he has so far refused to either confirm or deny this possibility. Last year, after his failed attempt to return to his position as Estonia's Prime Minister after Andrus Ansip stood down, Kallas was thought to be out of favor in his own party – the Reform Party that he co-founded in 1994 and which he is still an honorary chairman of – but Estonian media is again rife with theories that Kallas may run for the president.

Kallas returned to Estonia in October last year, when his Brussels-based ten-year tenure as an EU commissioner came to an end. He has recently been in semi-retirement, apart from giving lectures on finance and banking at the University of Tartu.

“I take it easy at the moment. There is still a year to go until presidential election and it is up to Parliament to decide. I'm not campaigning, but if such proposal was to be made, I wouldn't say no,” he told ERR, adding that it's not the end of the world if he wasn't offered the job.

Before becoming Estonia's first EU commissioner, Kallas served as Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Minister of Finance, and as head of Estonia's Central Bank.

Estonia's president is elected by the Parliament or a special electoral body for a five-year term. The electoral body is convened in case no candidate secures a two-third-majority in the Parliament after three rounds of balloting. Next presidential election will take place in 2016.

S. Tambur

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