The spouse of Prime Minister Kaja Kallas (Reform) has apparently made good on a pledge to sell his stake in a company at the heart of the recent controversy to have engulfed the head of government.
ERR reports that Novaria Consult, a holding company owned by Arvo Hallik, the prime minister's husband, no longer holds a stake in Stark Logistics.
Hallik, via Novaria, had previously owned a 24.8 percent stake in Stark Logistics, which hit the headlines starting last month following revelations that Stark had continued to provide transport services to another, related Estonian company; transport services which involved exporting manufactured items into the Russian Federation.
Data available from the commercial register shows that whereas on Tuesday, the Novaria stake in Stark Logistics was still registered, as of Wednesday morning Novaria no longer holds that stake, though Arvo Hallik remains a member of Stark Logistics supervisory board.
Board chair of Stark Logistics remains Martti Lemendik, who is also the majority shareholder in the company, while Peep Tomingas remains board member, alongside Arvo Hallik, according to the register.
Hallik had pledged on August 25 to divest himself of his near-25 percent stake, days after the story broke that Stark Logistics had continued to transport metal components, made by Metaprint, a company majority-owned by Martti Lemendik, into the Russian Federation, after the February 2022 invasion of Ukraine and right up to the present.
This was despite the prime minister's consistent line that all companies doing any kind of business in or with Russia should sever those ties, and that stricter sanctions and other injunctions should be put in place on Russia, twinned with greater support for Ukraine.
The Metaprint parts themselves were a workaround on existing sanctions, since they reportedly go to make aerosol cans; assembled aerosol cans are subject to sanctions and so cannot be exported to Russia in one piece.
On August 25, Hallik also said he would terminate his employment contract as financial manager at Stark Logistics.
Hallik retains a 30 percent stake in a separate firm, Stark Warehousing, and says he has no plans to sell this.
The prime minister had said that her spouse was selling the Stark Logistics share for a nominal sum, though the figure has not been reported.
Editor: Karin Koppel, Andrew Whyte