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

 

Minister of Foreign Affairs Kristiina Ojuland answered the question of Enn Eesmaa about the matters dealt with in the Council of Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the European Union, the question of Andres Herkel about the peoples? right to self-determination, and the question of Toomas Alatalu about the Baltic policy.

 

Minister of Social Affairs Marko Pomerants answered the question of Siiri Oviir about social protection and the question of Kadi Pärnits about employment policy.

 

Minister of Economic Affairs and Communications Meelis Atonen answered the question of Eiki Nestor about the ferry link and the question of Mark Soosaar about the administration of the ports of small islands.

 

Justice of the Supreme Court Peeter Jerofejev took the oath of office before the Riigikogu.

 

The Riigikogu passed the following Acts:

 

The Riigikogu passed with 69 votes in favour the Code of Criminal Procedure Implementation Act (295 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The Act ensures the entry into force of the Code of Criminal Procedure, passed on February 2, 2003. As an essential innovation, the Act stipulates the compilation of the statement of charges in the Prosecutor? Office. The task of an investigative body is to make a summary on the pre-trial procedure and to send the collected evidence and other materials to the Prosecutor?s Office. In addition to the procedure for implementation, the Act also regulates amendments to other Acts, related to the management procedure.

 

The Telecommunications Act and Security Authorities Act Amendment Act (219 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic, was passed with 62 votes in favour. The Act ensures the imposing of restrictions on the right to the confidentiality of messages to the surveillance agency and security authority, which is important in the struggle against crime and which is based on the cooperation between the operators of the state and telecommunications network and providers of telecommunications services. In addition to the surveillance agencies, an operator of telecommunications network and a provider of telecommunications services are obligated to give information and to enable the telecommunications network access also to the Security Police Board and Information Board.

 

The Riigikogu passed with 50 votes in favour (10 against, 4 abstentions) the Maritime Safety Act Amendment Act (271 SE), initiated by Members of the Riigikogu Tiit Mae, Vello Tafenau, Jüri Saar, Jaanus Rahumägi and Märt Rask. The Act makes amendments to the requirements set to the skippers of recreational craft.

 

The Riigikogu passed with 16 votes in favour (5 votes against, 2 abstentions) the Alcohol Act and State Fees Act Amendment Act (328 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The Act brings the Alcohol Act into conformity with the legal system, which extends to Estonia after Estonia?s accession to the European Union. The circumstances impeding the handling of legally produced or imported alcohol of the EU in Estonia were eliminated, the free movement of goods was ensured and the compliance with requirements of the alcohol marketed in Estonia, was ensured.

 

The Act on the Ratification of the Convention between the Government of the Republic of Estonia and the Government of the Russian Federation for the Avoidance of Double Taxation and the Prevention of Fiscal Evasion with Respect to Taxes on Income and the Protocol thereto (319 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic, was passed with 41 votes in favour. The aim of the conclusion of agreements for the avoidance of double taxation is to eliminate international double taxation which may occur upon imposing taxes on persons on the basis of double residency, upon double taxation of sources of income or simultaneously on the basis of the residency of a taxpayer as well as the source of income. The Convention regulates the division of the right to taxation between the states and stipulates the avoidance of discriminatory taxation and the prevention of fiscal evasion.

 

The Act on the Ratification of the Convention between the Republic of Estonia and the Portuguese Republic for the Avoidance of Double Taxation and the Prevention of Fiscal Evasion with Respect to Taxes on Income and the Protocol thereto (320 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic, was passed with 36 votes in favour.

 

The Act on the Ratification of the Agreement between the Government of the Republic of Estonia and the Government of the Republic of Croatia for the Avoidance of Double Taxation and the Prevention of Fiscal Evasion with Respect to Taxes on Income (321 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic, was passed with 38 votes in favour.

 

The Act on the Ratification of the Convention between the Republic of Estonia and the Republic of Hungary for the Avoidance of Double Taxation and the Prevention of Fiscal Evasion with Respect to Taxes on Income and on Capital and the Protocol thereto (322 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic, was passed with 41 votes in favour.

 

The Act on the Ratification of the Convention between the Republic of Estonia and the Swiss Federal Council for the Avoidance of Double Taxation with Respect to Taxes on Income and on Capital and the Protocol thereto (331 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic, was passed with 42 votes in favour (1 abstention).

 

The Riigikogu concluded the second reading of the following Bills:

 

The Bill on Amendments to the Health Insurance Act and the Defence Forces Service Act (230 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic.

  

The Bill on Amendments to the Income Tax Act and Taxation Act (356 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic.

 

The Bill on Amendments to Act on the Procedure for the Return of Cultural Objects Unlawfully Removed from a Member State of the European Union (334 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic.

 

The Housing Associations Bill (287 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic.

 

The Riigikogu suspended the second reading of the following Bill:

 

The Postal Bill (281 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The term for submission of motions to amend to the Economic Affairs Committee is 25 May, 12.00.

 

The Riigikogu concluded the first reading of the following Bills:

 

The Promotion of Local Government Merger Bill (359 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The Isamaaliit Faction moved to reject the Bill at the first reading. The results of voting: 8 votes in favour, 55 against. The Bill remained in the legislative proceeding. The term for submission of motions to amend to the Constitutional Committee is 28 May, 16.45.

 

The Bill on Amendments to the Election Acts (343 SE), initiated by the Isamaaliit Faction. The term for submission of motions to amend to the Constitutional Committee is 2 June, 18.00.

 

The Bill on the Ratification of the Agreement on the Privileges and Immunities of the International Criminal Court (332 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The term for submission of motions to amend to the Legal Affairs Committee is 2 June, 18.00.

 

The Bill on Amendments to the Chemicals Act, State Fees Act and Fertilizers Act (370 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The term for submission of motions to amend to the Environment Committee is 25 May, 12.00.

 

The Tobacco Bill (350 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The term for submission of motions to amend to the Social Affairs Committee is 2 June, 18.00.

 

The Bill on Amendments to the Dwelling Act (313 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The Estonian Centre Party Faction moved to reject the Bill at the first reading. The results of voting: 28 votes in favour, 37 against. The Bill remained in the legislative proceeding. The term for submission of motions to amend to the Economic Affairs Committee is 26 May, 12.00.

 

The Bill on Amendments to the Telecommunications Act (338 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The term for submission of motions to amend to the Economic Affairs Committee is 26 May, 12.00.

 

The Bill on Amendments to the Competition Act (355 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The term for submission of motions to amend to the Economic Affairs Committee is 26 May, 12.00.

 

The sitting ended at 18.56.

 

The Riigikogu Press Service

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