Finance Minister Peter Kažimír has confirmed his interest in becoming the new governor of the National Bank of Slovakia (NBS), the country’s central bank.
Jozef Makúch, the current governor, has announced he will leave the post next March, which is earlier than expected. His official term ends in January 2021, the TASR newswire reported.
“My decision is also a decision to retreat from active politics,” said Kažimír, as quoted by TASR, adding he has always seen his post as an expert position, which cannot be completely dragged away from politics, but he has tried balancing the two positions.
He is expected to announce his resignation at the Smer rally on December 8, the Sme daily reported.
“What attracts me to the NBS governor position is the world of figures only,” Kažimír said, as quoted by TASR.
Kažimír is a favourite
Makúch informed the Bank Board of his departure on November 27. His stepping down has been long expected as he signalled it already in September.
Though there have been rumours that Kažimír wants to take the post, he refused to comment on this information until now. He concentrated on the preparations of the state budget for 2019, which will be discussed at the next parliamentary session, Sme reported.
It is said to be the first balanced state budget in Slovakia's history. The Finance Ministry initially counted on a deficit of 0.1 percent.
The new governor will be proposed by the government, approved by the parliament, and appointed by the president.
“The president will not comment on speculations, which you certainly can understand,” Roman Krpelan, President Andrej Kiska’s spokesperson, told Sme.
Two names considered for finance minister post
Since Kažimír will leave the post, Smer will have to search for the new finance minister.
It is rumoured that František Imrecze may replace Kažimír in the finance minister’s chair. Imrecze used to serve as the Financial Administration’s president, but he resigned from the post this autumn after the €300 million customs frauds scandal related to imports from China surfaced.
Since the public might oppose this option, Smer is considering another person: Ladislav Kamenický, the parliamentary finance and budget committee chair.
“I have not received any offer yet," Kamenický commented for Sme, adding that if he was offered this position, he would have to consider it well.
27. Nov 2018 at 22:21 | Compiled by Spectator staff