Estonia’s Political System

Following the 1992 Constitution, based on the 1938 Constitution, Estonia is a unified state and democratic republic. Legislative authority has been added to a state assembly (Riigikogu) with 101 members, elected in the general election for four years. The voting age is 18 years. The Assembly also elects the President. The president is elected for five years and can be re-elected once. The president is the country’s head of state, has independent positions in foreign policy and is the supreme military leader. The president nominates the prime ministerial candidate, who must be accepted by the National Assembly and is also accountable to it. Estonia has such a combined parliamentary and presidential regime, not unlike Finland.

Estonia’s politics are characterized by the fact that the country has only been independent for shorter periods and that it has been linked between great powers, Sweden (until 1721), but especially Russia / Soviet Union and Prussia / Germany. Estonia became independent of Russia for a brief period in 1917, then from 1918 to 1939/40 and finally since 1991. Relations with Russia and the large Russian minority in Estonia have been the overriding political problem.

Estonia President

Following independence, Estonia has been politically oriented west and northwest. In 2004, Estonia joined NATO and the EU.


Administratively, Estonia is divided into 15 counties and six cities. The counties are further divided into municipalities. The local units have chosen advice.


The courts initially include district and district courts as well as their own administrative courts, in the second instance district courts and in the upper instance the national court (Riigikohus) with four chambers.