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At Question Time ministers answered the questions of the members of the Riigikogu.

 

Minister of Social Affairs Marko Pomerants answered the question of Andres Tarand about the political liability of the Ministry of Social Affairs, the question of Helir-Valdor Seeder about the central hospital of prisons and the question of Kadi Pärnits about successful social policy.

 

Minister of the Environment Villu Reiljan answered the question of Mihhail Stalnuhhin about the municipalisation of the state land.

 

Minister of Education and Research Toivo Maimets answered the question of Tõnis Lukas about the Programme of the 21st Century School and the question of Eiki Nestor about successful education policy.

 

The Riigikogu passed the following Acts:

 

The Riigikogu passed with 63 votes in favour the Investment Funds Act (289 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The Act establishes the regulations on the formation and management of investment funds, among them pension funds, the regulation on investment and supervision of assets.

 

The Riigikogu passed with 64 votes in favour the Funded Pensions Act (290 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The Act consolidates, first of all, the provisions relating to persons, which regulate the making of contributions to and disbursements from mandatory or voluntary pension funds and the conclusion of pension insurance agreements.

 

The Riigikogu passed with 61 votes in favour the Public Service Act Amendment Act (286 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The Act brings the Public Service Act into conformity with the principle of free movement of workers, proceeding from the Treaty of Accession to the European Union, and regulates the matters related to the assignment of state experts to the institutions of the European Union.

 

The Riigikogu passed with 60 votes in favour the Act on Amendments to § 9 of the Telecommunications Act (282 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The Act eliminates the problems that have emerged in connection with the obligation of persons to notify of commencing the business in telecommunications, considering the situation in the telecommunications market.

 

The Riigikogu passed with 61 votes in favour the Information Society Services Act (285 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The Act ensures the free movement of services of the information society in the single market of the European Union. Pursuant to § 14 (2) of the Memorandum of Association of the European Communities, the domestic market of the European Union represents itself as the area without internal frontiers, where the free movement of goods and services and freedom of establishment have been ensured.

 

The Riigikogu passed with 54 votes in favour the Road Transport Act and State Fees Act Amendment Act (288 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The Act brings the valid Act into conformity with the legal acts of the European Union and harmonises the Road Transport Act with the Public Transport Act.

 

The Pre-school Child Care Institutions Act, Private Schools Act, Juvenile Sanctions Act and Basic Schools and Upper Secondary Schools Act Amendment Act (215 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic, was passed with 65 votes in favour. The Act enables to form kindergartens-basic schools.

 

The Riigikogu passed with 56 votes in favour the Act on the Enforcement, Repeal and Amendment of the Provisions of Acts Related to Estonia?s Accession to the European Union (192 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The Act ensures the principle of clarity and certainty of law, which means that an individual is able to foresee the behaviour of state bodies with certain likelihood and to take it into account. The Act enforces, repeals and makes amendments to a number of provisions in connection with Estonia?s accession to the European Union on May 1, 2004.

 

The Riigikogu passed with 62 votes in favour (1 abstention) the Water Act Amendment Act (268 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The Act solves the problems which have emerged upon the implementation of water investigations in Estonia, use of fertilizers, collection of hazardous substances into recipients and upon planning of water protection and use.

 

The Riigikogu passed with 51 votes in favour (1 vote against) the Deliberate Release of Genetically Modified Organisms into the Environment Act (292 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The Act regulates the deliberate release of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) into the environment and the marketing of products containing GMOs. The Act improves the control over the distribution of GMOs, as a result of which the procedures related with GMOs become less hazardous to human health and the environment.

 

The Riigikogu passed with 64 votes in favour the Health Care Services Organisation Act Amendment Act (257 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The Act makes amendments to the Act in force, taking into account the comments of the Internal Market Directorate General of the European Commission regarding the recognition of professional qualifications, regulated with sectoral directives, and applies the provisions of directives wherein the facilitation of the supply of services in the European Union is made easier.

 

The Act on Amendments to the Aliens Act and to Other Acts Arising Therefrom (263 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic, was passed with 49 votes in favour (1 abstention). The Act brings the Estonian legislation into conformity with the Schengen Law, valid in the single visa space in the European Union and establishes the regulation of visa matters at the level of law. The Act stipulates also the bases for the issue of residence and work permits to aliens. Due to the establishment of the relevant visa regulation in accordance with the Schengen Law and relevant amendments, the amendments were also made to the Taxation Act, State Fees Act and State Borders Act.

 

The Riigikogu passed with 63 votes in favour the Public and National Holidays Act Amendment Act (229 SE), initiated by the Isamaaliit Faction and Member of the Riigikogu Tiit Matsulevit?. On June 4, 2004, the state and people of Estonia celebrate the 120th birthday of their historical flag. In order to mark it and strengthen the national identity attitude among the people, the 4th of June was stipulated in the Act as a national holiday ? the Day of the Estonian Flag.

 

The Riigikogu passed with 58 votes in favour the Act on the Repeal of the Acts on the Ratification of Free Trade Agreements and Some Other International Agreements in connection with the Accession of the Republic of Estonia to the European Union (311 SE), initiated by the Legal Affairs Committee. The Act enforces, repeals and makes amendments to the provisions of the Acts in connection with Estonia?s accession to the European Union.  

 

The Riigikogu passed with 62 votes in favour the Act on the Ratification of the Protocol between the Government of the Republic of Estonia and the Government of the United States of America to the Treaty for the Encouragement and Reciprocal Protection of Investment and the Interpretative Diplomatic Notes thereto (300 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The Act approves the protocol between the Government of the Republic of Estonia and the Government of the United States of America to the Treaty for the Encouragement and Reciprocal Protection of Investment and the interpretative diplomatic notes thereto.

 

The Riigikogu passed with 51 votes in favour (3 votes against) the Resolution of the Riigikogu On the Use of Estonian Defence Forces in Performance of International Duties of the Estonian State in Post-conflict Security Restoration Mission in Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain and Iraq (274 OE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The Riigikogu decided, pursuant to the Constitution of the Republic of Estonia and International Military Cooperation Act and in compliance with relevant resolutions of the UN Security Council, to extend, stipulated by the Resolution of the Riigikogu of May 7, 2003, the use of the quota, consisting of 55 members of the Defence Forces in performance of international duties under the International Security Assistance Mission in Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain and Iraq, for up to one year, beginning from June 20, 2004.

 

The Riigikogu passed with 27 votes in favour the Act on the Ratification of the Memorandum of Understanding between the Government of the Republic of Estonia and Headquarters, Supreme Allied Commander Transformation and Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe Regarding the Provision of Host Nation Support for the Execution of NATO Operations (276 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The purpose of the Act is to ratify the Memorandum, which is the prerequisite for the enforcement of the Memorandum. The Government of the Republic approved the Act on the Ratification of the Memorandum on December 4, 2003. Vice Admiral Tarmo Kõuts signed the Memorandum on behalf of the Government of the Republic of Estonia on January 22, 2004.

 

The Riigikogu passed with 29 votes in favour The Act on the Ratification of the Agreement on the Termination of the Free Trade Agreement between the Government of the Republic of Estonia and the Government of Denmark and the Home Government of the Faroe Islands (301 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The Act is necessary for the fulfilment of obligations arising from Estonia?s  accession to the Treaty of Accession of the European Union.

  

The Riigikogu concluded the second reading of the following Bills:

 

The Nature Conservation Bill (279 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic.

 

The Packaging Bill (291 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic.

 

The Plant Protection Bill (305 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic.

 

The Rural Development and Agricultural Market Regulation Bill (309 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic.

 

The Bill on Amendments to §§ 5, 21 and 53 of the Health Insurance Act (307 SE), initiated by the Estonian Reform Party Faction, the Estonian People?s Union Faction and the Union for the Republic ? Res Publica Faction.

 

The Bill on Amendments to the Republic of Estonia Education Act, Adult Education Act, Basic Schools and Upper Secondary Schools Act, Hobby Schools Act, Private Schools Act, Pre-School Child Care Institutions Act, Vocational Educational Institutions Act and the Republic of Estonia Education Act (217 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic.

 

The Riigikogu suspended the second reading of the following Bill:

 

The Bill on Amendments to the Veterinary Activities Organisation Act, Animal Protection Act, State Fees Act and the Code of Enforcement Procedure (306 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The term for submission of motions to amend to the Rural Affairs Committee is 15 April, 10.00.

 

The Riigikogu concluded the first reading of the following Bills:

 

The Code of Criminal Procedure Implementation Bill (295 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The term for submission of motions to amend to the Legal Affairs Committee is 26 April, 10.00.

 

The Bill on Amendments to the Law of Property Act, Estonian Central Register of Securities Act, Credit Institutions Act, Insurance Activities Act, Bankruptcy Act, Law of Obligations Act and Private International Law Act (312 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The term for submission of motions to amend to the Legal Affairs Committee is 15 April, 18.00.

 

The Bill on Amendments to the State Secrets Act (308 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The term for submission of motions to amend to the Constitutional Committee is 19 April, 11.00.

 

The Bill on Amendments to the Electricity Market Bill (303 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The term for submission of motions to amend to the Economic Affairs Committee is 21 April, 12.00.

 

The Biocides Bill (318 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The term for submission of motions to amend to the Environment Committee is 20 April, 18.00.

 

The sitting ended at 18.02.

 

The Riigikogu Press Service

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