Position: Finance Minister
Incumbent: Peter Kazimir
Date of Birth: June 28, 1968
Term: Appointed on April 4, 2012 for a four-year term.
-- Kazimir has vowed to deliver on an ambitious fiscal consolidation plan, designed to cut the fiscal deficit to below the EU’s threshold of 3 percent/GDP in 2013, but additional tax hikes are inevitable to achieve this.
-- Kazimir supports strict fiscal discipline and co-authored Slovakia’s constitutional law, setting a debt brake at 60 percent of gross domestic product (GDP), with automatic sanctions starting at 50 percent.
-- He will now need to draft a package of further austerity measures to rein in a widening deficit and meet a 2012 deficit goal of not more than 4.6 percent of GDP.
-- Kazimir said he is open to a debate about combining the lending capacity of the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF) with the upcoming European Stability Mechanism (ESM) to bolster the euro zone’s firewall against future debt shocks.
-- Kazimir was deputy finance minister in Prime Minister Robert Fico’s first cabinet in 2006-2010 and was jointly responsible for completion of the country’s accession to the euro zone in January 2009.
-- He is widely considered by partners in and outside of government to be a pragmatic politician.
-- Kazimir studied economic and foreign trade in Bratislava and has a varied experience of business, including the real estate sector. (Reporting by Martin Santa; Editing by David Cutler)