The Estonian government approved the new makeup of the supervisory board of the Cultural Endowment of Estonia on Thursday, to which Minister of Culture Tõnis Lukas (Isamaa) appointed Bank of Estonia supervisory board chairman and ex-prime minister Mart Laar.
"Mart Laar is a great, open-minded cultural figure who has time right now to follow life in Estonia, and he is capable of giving golden advice," Lukas told ERR about why he chose Laar.
Both Laar and Lukas belong to Isamaa, however the minister stressed that there is no need to fear that Laar may be politically dependent or biased on the endowment's supervisory board.
"Laar has demonstrated independence and sticking to his own course in his leadership of the Bank of Estonia's supervisory board," he said. "I don't even know anyone more independent than him."
By law, the supervisory board of the Cultural Endowment is led by the minister of culture.
Confirmed as members of the supervisory board by the government were Peeter Lusmägi (physical fitness and sports endowment), Lauri Kärk (audiovisual arts endowment), Jaak Allik (performing arts endowment), Jorma Sarv (folk culture endowment), Berk Vaher (literature endowment), Marje Lohuaru (music endowment), Maarin Ektermann (visual and applied arts endowment), Mart Laar as representative of the minister of culture and Anu Saluäär-Kall as representative of the minister of finance.
"We can confidently say that we have ended up with a representative and competent supervisory board," Lukas said. "Thank you very much to our endowments."
Among the supervisory board's responsibilities are the distribution of annual revenue, the financing of multidisciplinary projects as well as decisions regarding the funding of endowment and expert group-initiated projects.
The supervisory board also distributes sums received for cultural buildings in accordance with a Riigikogu-confirmed ranked list, defines the limits for support to be distributed, analyzes the results of the Cultural Endowment's activities, and confirms the Cultural Endowment's annual budget and annual financial report. The daily work of the Cultural Endowment is led by a director appointed by the supervisory board for a term of up to four years.
Editor: Aili Vahtla