PM Kaja Kallas: I have no plans to resign

Kaja Kallas at the NATO's Vilnius Summit on July 11, 2023.
Kaja Kallas at the NATO's Vilnius Summit on July 11, 2023. Source: Jürgen Randmaa / valitsuse pressiteenistus

Kaja Kallas (Reform) has no intention of resigning as prime minister due to the scandal involving her husband's company. In an interview with ERR, Kallas described doing business in Russia with non-sanctioned products as a question of moral compass.

You suggested on Thursday that we contact the owner of Metaprint with questions, and we have now received responses from him indicating that Metaprint, Stark Logistics and Aeroprom are essentially the same entity, with Stark Logistics functioning as its transport division.

In addition, the responses provided by Martti Lemendik, CEO of Metaprint and Stark Logistics, revealed that Kristjan Kraag's earlier claim that Stark Logistics was merely helping to reduce another company's operations in Russia was false; in fact, operations have expanded and €30 million have been earned. Also causing concern is the fact that an Estonian company manufactures goods in Russia that it cannot export because of sanctions. This seems to be an obvious violation of the sanctions.

How do you understand these facts?

There must be punishments for dealing with sanctioned goods; everything else is a matter of moral compass.

Do you consider it is possible for you to continue in your position as prime minister in light of this new information?

I have no plans to resign; I have served and will continue to serve as prime minister for the freedom of Ukraine and for Estonia.

At least three visits to Metaprint are documented: on January 28, you visited Metaprint in your capacity as prime minister, and Lemendik's interview revealed that you accompanied your spouse to Metaprint events twice. Do you still maintain that you only became aware of their activities on Monday?

I visited Metaprint on January 28, 2022, before the outbreak of full-scale war, so the topics discussed were different.

Have you asked your spouse, Arvo Hallik, what he did with the loan you gave him? What were the exact provisions of the loan?

My husband said that his company, Novaria Consult, invested this sum alongside other capital in a variety of financial ventures. We have never discussed the nature of these investments. His company has now repaid the loan in full.

Arvo Hallik told Eesti Päevaleht that since the beginning of the war, Stark Logistics has been discussing with its colleagues about Russian freight transport: whether it is morally acceptable to help an Estonian client in a dire situation. Did your husband really never told you that the company is having an ongoing discussion about this issue?

My husband and I never discuss business at home.


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Editor: Marko Tooming, Kristina Kersa

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