PM Kaja Kallas: I am not involved in my husband's business

PM Kaja Kallas.
PM Kaja Kallas. Source: Siim Lõvi/ERR

Prime Minister Kaja Kallas (Reform) said that the company owned by her husband, Arvo Hallik, does not do business with Russian clients and she is confident that the companies owned by her husband do not engage in morally wrongful activity; however, she was unable to comment further on the business.

Prime Minister Kaja Kallas, did you know that your husband's company manages logistics from Estonia to Russia and vice versa?

My husband's business has no clients in the Russian Federation and does not arrange any transportation in Russia. As soon as this war began, they, like many other businesses, severed all ties with Russian customers in Russia and terminated the associated contracts.

But does he transport goods from Estonia to Russia?

You can pose these questions to my husband's company, and they will most likely respond. I don't do this business; you might not believe it, but being prime minister is a very demanding job; I don't have time to run a side business. What I am absolutely certain and confident about is that my husband's companies are not engaging in any immoral  activity.

But were you aware that your husband's company was shipping items between Estonia and Russia?

I am not involved in my husband's business. When journalists asked these questions, I also asked my husband and he said that they were returning goods back from a customer who was closing their factory there. They should be able to provide you with more information. I think he is constrained by some confidentiality agreements, but his answers gave me confidence that he was not involved in any of the activities he was accused of in the press.

Tomorrow marks one and a half years since Russia's full-scale invasion began. For a year and a half the company has been transporting these goods. Would it be accurate to say that there has been a contraction of business?

I am not in this business, I can't answer. I am the prime minister, I have my own job.

I understand, but do you think it is right for Estonian logistics companies to be doing this kind of business a year and a half after the war started?

No, I don't think this would be right and that is why he does not do this business. I can't respond to these questions. I have seen the data, and I am guessing they will make it public if they get the customer's permission. But, once again, I have got my hands full as prime minister, I am not involved in his business and I know that my husband has no clients in the Russian Federation. The last agreement... I'm not going there; they will have to answer for themselves.

If Volodymyr Zelenskyy's family owned a business that shipped items to or from...

But they don't ship, they don't even buy fuel from Russia to avoid leaving a single euro or coin in Russia.

Wouldn't it have been more moral to halt all shipments from the day one, so that no vans went to Russia?

I have access to this information and the fact that you keep questioning me is shameful, as I will not respond.

In June, Kaja Kallas's declaration disclosed that she had lent €350,000 to the business of Arvo Hallik, Novaria Consult, of which Hallik is the sole owner. The corporation holds a 24.8 percent stake in Stark Logistics AS.

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Editor: Barbara Oja, Kristina Kersa

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