Official coalition negotiations starting as Kaja Kallas made PM candidate

Kaja Kallas before her meeting with President Kersti Kaljulaid, 5 April 2019.
Kaja Kallas before her meeting with President Kersti Kaljulaid, 5 April 2019. Source: Siim Lõvi/ERR

The Reform Party is set to start the first round of official coalition talks with the Social Democratic Party now that President Kersti Kaljulaid has given Reform chairwoman Kaja Kallas the task to form a government. Ms Kallas said that she would also consider a minority government and hope for sufficient support among Centre and Isamaa voters.

Ms Kallas said that she is motivated to form a government for two reasons. "First of all to send a signal to society on the whole that politics can be done in a positive, dignified and open way," she said. "Without putting anyone down or threatening them."

"Second, I believe that a basis for the government of Estonia can be put together that is more comprehensive, more ambitious and more directed towards the future, with a focus not on avoiding the worst, but on doing the things that get Estonia ahead," Ms Kallas added.

She added that it is her goal to get the issue settled within a week, and that the Reform Party will also talk to the Social Democratic Party (SDE).

Ms Kallas also said that she is ready to risk a minority government. Together with SDE, she believes Reform will be able to offer enough for the MPs of other parties to agree with as well, she added.

The Reform Party now has 14 days to negotiate with potential coalition partners. Reform representatives will meet with an SDE delegation already today Friday.

The extended board of the party will meet at Tallinn's Radisson Blu hotel at 15.30 EET on Friday.

While this marks the beginning of the first official round of coalition negotiations, the unofficial preliminary talks of the Centre Party, the Conservative People's Party (EKRE) and Isamaa are headed towards the confirmation of a coalition agreement—also preliminary in nature, at least for the time being.

Should Ms Kallas fail to form a government within 14 days, President Kersti Kaljulaid is expected to give the task to Centre's Jüri Ratas next.

Editor: Dario Cavegn

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