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Estonia's Center-Right Govt. Wins Poll

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TEHRAN, March 7 (ICANA) – Estonia's center-right coalition government has secured a victory in the general elections, setting the stage for continuation of the economic recovery.
Monday, March 07, 2011 9:59:46 AM
Estonia's Center-Right Govt. Wins Poll

According to official figures, the two-party coalition led by Prime Minister Andrus Ansip managed to secure 56 seats in the 101-member parliament, compared with 45 seats for two center-left opposition parties, AFP reported on Sunday.

The election commission said Ansip's Reform Party and its conservative partner, the Union of Pro Patria and Res Publica (IRL), gained 56 seats combined.

The turnout in the general election, which was the first poll since Estonia became a eurozone member in December 2010, has been estimated at 62.9 percent, up from 61 percent in the 2007 vote.

The victory for the center-right coalition has boosted Ansip's hopes to progress his plans to reverse the nations' economic downturn, marked by a high unemployment rate of 14 percent.

Estonia's 912,565-strong electorate on Sunday showed scant enthusiasm to excoriate their prime minister for his tight-belting fiscal restraint, even though the nation has been under the burden of fiscal austerity measures since the outbreak of the global economic downturn.

A string of budget cuts and ensuing austerity measures cost the coalition government nine seats in the last general election in 2007.

Ansip has been Estonia's prime minister since 2005, one year after the country joined the European Union.

Estonia's economy shrank by 14.1 percent in 2009, one of the world's deepest recessions, before growing 3.1 percent in 2010.

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