As of Friday, membership in the Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE) has surpassed that of the Pro Patria Party, making EKRE the third largest party in Estonia.
EKRE is the only parliamentary party in Estonia whose membership has seen growth in 2018. Last Friday, its membership also surpassed that of the likewise conservative Pro Patria Party. As of midday on Friday, a total of 8,599 belong to EKRE, according to data from the Commercial Register. Pro Patria membership, meanwhile, fell just short of a tie at 8,598.
At the beginning of 2018, EKRE still trailed behind the junior coalition partner by nearly 600 members, but over the past ten months, Pro Patria has lost nearly 200 and EKRE gained nearly 400 new members.
The ruling Centre Party remains Estonia's largest with 14,707 members. This summer saw the loss of a few hundred members, first and foremost from its Narva branch. Its numbers have begun to recover toward the end of 2018, but currently still fall nearly 100 members short of its total at the start of the year.
The Reform Party, the largest party currently in the opposition, currently has 12,172 members, which, similarly to Centre, is approximately 100 short of its total membership as of the beginning of 2018.
The coalition Social Democratic Party (SDE) has also lost approximately a hundred members, whose membership as of Friday totals 5,777.
Small parties see big losses
The opposition Free Party has lost some 50 members over the course of the year, but considering the overall size of their party — 591 as of 2 November — this is the largest loss a parliamentary party has seen this year, relatively speaking.
The non-parliamentary Estonian Greens has similarly lost around 50 members, putting their current total membership at just 992.
Political newcomer Estonia 200 announced recently that they had the required minimum 500 members needed to officially establish a new political party as of 22 October. Estonia 200 plans to formally establish itself as a party at a general meeting on Saturday.
Editor: Aili Vahtla