Peter Pellegrini

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Peter Pellegrini
Pellegrini in 2019
Prime Minister of Slovakia
In office
22 March 2018 – 20 March 2020
PresidentAndrej Kiska
Zuzana Čaputová
Preceded byRobert Fico
Succeeded byIgor Matovič
Deputy Prime Minister of Slovakia
In office
23 March 2016 – 22 March 2018
Prime MinisterRobert Fico
Preceded byĽubomír Vážny
Succeeded byRichard Raši
Speaker of the National Council
In office
25 November 2014 – 23 March 2016
Preceded byPavol Paška
Succeeded byAndrej Danko
Minister for Education and Science
In office
3 July 2014 – 25 November 2014
Prime MinisterRobert Fico
Preceded byDušan Čaplovič
Succeeded byJuraj Draxler
Personal details
Born (1975-10-06) 6 October 1975 (age 44)
Banská Bystrica, Slovak SR, Czechoslovak SR
(now Slovakia)
Political partyVoice – Social Democracy (2020–)
Direction – Social Democracy (2000–2020)
Alma materMatej Bel University, Technical University of Košice

Peter Pellegrini (Slovak pronunciation: [ˈpɛtɛr ˈpɛlːɛɡriɲi]; born 6 October 1975) is a Slovak politician who has served as Prime Minister of Slovakia from 2018 to 2020 and Minister of Health from December 2019 to March 2020. He previously served as Deputy Prime Minister (2016–2018) and Minister for Education and Science (2014), as well as spending two years as Speaker of the National Council (2014–2016). Pellegrini was a member of Direction – Social Democracy until he left the party and founded Voice – Social Democracy in late June 2020.

Education and private career[edit]

Pellegrini's great-grandfather was Italian. He studied at the Faculty of Economics of Matej Bel University and the Technical University of Košice, focusing on banking, investment and finance at the latter.[1] Between 2002 and 2006, he worked as an economist and later as advisor to National Council member for Privatization and Economy Ľubomír Vážny, supported by ĽS-HZDS, SNS and Smer-SD.[2][1]

Political involvement[edit]

Early functions[edit]

In the 2006 parliamentary election, he was elected to the National Council for Direction – Social Democracy (Smer-SD). He was reelected in the 2010 and 2012 elections.[1] Between 2012 and 3 July 2014 he was State Secretary for Finance. He later briefly became Minister for Education and Science.[2]

Speaker of the National Council[edit]

On 25 November 2014, he was elected Speaker of the National Council, succeeding Pavol Paška.[3] In 2015, he was appointed Digital Champion of Slovakia, a European Union appointed position to promote the benefits of an inclusive digital society.[4]

Prime Minister of Slovakia[edit]

Pellegrini meeting with President Donald Trump at the White House

Made Deputy Prime Minister for Investments in 2016, under Prime Minister Robert Fico,[5] Pellegrini was sworn in as head of government after his predecessor resigned on 15 March 2018 in the wake of the murder of journalist Ján Kuciak.[6] President Andrej Kiska approved of Pellegrini's Cabinet on 21 March 2018;[7] 81 members of the National Council voted in favour of approving the cabinet the next week.[8]

Pellegrini's meeting with Prime Minister of Russia Mikhail Mishustin on 26 February 2020

After serving as Acting Interior Minister in April 2018, Pellegrini temporarily took on the role of Finance Minister when Peter Kažimír left to become Governor of the National Bank of Slovakia in 2019.[9]

Later, in December 2019, he assumed the office of Minister of Health after Andrea Kalavská resigned.[10]

His party lost the 2020 parliamentary election to the populist, anti-corruption party Ordinary People led by Igor Matovič.[11][12][13][14]

During the COVID-19 pandemic, as medical supplies began to dwindle, nations began competing for supplies outside their jurisdictions, either paying companies to reroute or seizing equipment intended for other countries. Pellegrini said he booked two million masks from Ukraine, the requirement was payment in cash. However, a German agent appeared, paid more for the masks, and bought them. Ukraine Foreign Affairs Minister Dmytro Kuleba responded to the situation by saying there was no country in Europe that would not hunt face masks and respirators around the world.[15]

Personal life[edit]

Pellegrini has Italian roots.[16] His great-grandfather Leopoldo Pellegrini came to the Austro-Hungarian Empire to participate in the construction of the railway between Levice and Zvolen. He then decided to settle in Lehôtka pod Brehmi, in the district of Žiar nad Hronom, after falling in love with a local girl, Maria Kunovská.[17][18]


  1. ^ a b c "Panellist - Peter Pellegrini". Globsec. Archived from the original on 20 December 2014. Retrieved 11 January 2015.
  2. ^ a b "Novým ministrom školstva sa stal Peter Pellegrini" (in Slovak). Slovak Ministry for Education, Science, Research and Sport. 3 July 2014. Retrieved 11 January 2015.
  3. ^ "Novým predsedom parlamentu sa stal Peter Pellegrini" (in Slovak). Teraz. January 1970. Retrieved 11 January 2015.
  4. ^ "The Digital Champion of Slovakia". European Commission. Retrieved 11 January 2015.
  5. ^ "Robert Fico appointed for third time as Slovak PM". Xinhua. 24 March 2016. Retrieved 2 April 2016.
  6. ^ U.S. News. "Reshuffled Slovak Cabinet Takes Office, Easing Crisis After Journalist's Murder". Retrieved 30 March 2018.
  7. ^ Financial Times. "Slovak president approves new cabinet". Retrieved 30 March 2018.
  8. ^ The Sun Daily. "Slovakia MPs okay cabinet despite calls for snap polls". Retrieved 30 March 2018.
  9. ^ Jason Hovet (4 April 2019), Slovak PM to head finance ministry temporarily after Kazimir leaves Reuters.
  10. ^ Daniela Hajčáková (17 December 2019), "Čaputová prijala Kalavskej demisiu, ministerstvo povedie Pellegrini"
  11. ^ "Anti-corruption party wins Slovakia election". BBC News. 1 March 2020. Retrieved 1 March 2020.
  12. ^ France-Presse, Agence (1 March 2020). "Slovakia election: seismic shift as public anger ousts dominant Smer-SD party". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 1 March 2020.
  13. ^ "Slovakia's anti-corruption opposition party wins election". euronews. 1 March 2020. Retrieved 1 March 2020.
  14. ^ Mortkowitz, Siegfried (29 February 2020). "Anti-corruption opposition wins Slovakia election". POLITICO. Retrieved 1 March 2020.
  15. ^ Zubkova, Dasha (16 March 2020). "Ukraine Was Ready To Sell Slovakia 2 Million Medical Face Masks, But Order Was Cut Off – Prime Minister Of Slovakia Pellegrini". Ukrainian News.
  16. ^ a.s., Petit Press (22 March 2016). "Deputy prime minister for investments: Peter Pellegrini (Smer)".
  17. ^ "Pellegrini – profil nového slovenského premiéra v 10 bodech -".
  18. ^ "Chi è il nuovo primo ministro incaricato Peter Pellegrini". 19 March 2018.
Political offices
Preceded by
Dušan Čaplovič
Minister for Education and Science
Succeeded by
Juraj Draxler
Preceded by
Pavol Paška
Speaker of the National Council
Succeeded by
Andrej Danko
Preceded by
Ľubomír Vážny
Deputy Prime Minister of Slovakia
Succeeded by
Richard Raši
Preceded by
Robert Fico
Prime Minister of Slovakia
Succeeded by
Igor Matovič