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Minister of Culture Tõnis Lukas

Tõnis Lukas is the Minister of Culture of the Republic of Estonia as of 29 April 2019. He is a member of the political party Isamaa.

Tõnis Lukas was born on 5 June 1962 in Tallinn. He is married and a father of two daughters and one son. Lukas became a member of the political party Isamaa in 1992 and is a member of the Academic Unit of the District of Tartu of the Estonian Defence League. He was awarded with the 4th class of the Order of the National Coat of Arms in 2006.

Employment History

  • In 2013–2018 and 1992–1995, he served as Director of the Estonian National Museum.
  • In 2011–2012, he was a member of the XII Riigikogu.
  • In 2007–2011, he was the Minister of Education and Research of the Republic of Estonia.
  • In 2002–2007, he was a member of the IX and X Riigikogu.
  • In 1999–2002, he was the Minister of Education of the Republic of Estonia.
  • In 1996–1997, he was the mayor of Tartu.
  • In 1995–1996, he was a member of the VIII Riigikogu and Chairman of the Cultural Affairs Committee.


Tõnis Lukas graduated from the University of Tartu in history in 1987 and defended his Master’s Thesis at the University of Tartu on the same specialty in 1998. He speaks Estonian, English, and French.


Minister of Culture

The minister shall be appointed to office by the President of the Republic on the proposal from the Prime Minister.

  • The Minister of Culture heads the Ministry of Culture and decides on the matters within its area of government. Additionally, the Minister reports on the activities of the Ministry of Culture to the Government of the Republic and submits proposals on deciding over issues related to the Ministry’s area of government.
  • The Minister of Culture approves the cultural recognition of cultural heritage objects and the exclusion of such objects from monument status.
  • The Minister of Culture manages the Council of the Cultural Endowment of Estonia and approves the memberships of the endowment panels, for example, the Endowment Panel of Folk Culture.
  • The Minister of Culture makes proposals to the Government on the Ministry's budget and supplementary budget, when necessary. At the same time, he decides on the use of budget resources and monitors the implementation of the budget. The Minister also approves the budgets of the state authorities belonging to the Ministry's area of government on the basis of the state budget.
  • The Minister of Culture decides on the establishment of the state authorities belonging to the Ministry’s area of administration and approves their statutes, structure, and work organisation.

Ministry of Culture

  • Manages national culture and sports, the promotion of arts, and the resolution of problems related to these areas.
  • Develops the principles for national funding of culture and sports and co-operates with the Cultural Endowment and other institutions supporting culture and sports.
  • Awards national cultural prizes and scholarships.
  • Determines the general patterns for sports and physical fitness and manages co-operation between various sports organisations.
  • Develops the creative economy in collaboration with other ministries.
  • Is responsible for the co-ordination of all national heritage conservation activities.
  • Issues broadcasting licences.
  • Supports the culture of national minorities and the organisation of their cultural life and activities.
  • Prepares draft legislation related to its area of government and takes care of their compliance with the Constitution and other laws.

Ministry of Culture »

Last updated: 3 May 2019