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The Riigikogu passed with 71 votes in favour the Act on Amendments to the Penal Code (642 SE), initiated by the Government. The objective of the amendments is to bring the regulation included in the Penal Code into conformity with the requirements in force in the European Union which will have a significant impact above all on international economic relationships. The Act harmonises the Estonian penal law with the EU Framework Decision. A section which provides punishments for counterfeiting currency is added to the Penal Code. Nobody voted against the Act and nobody abstained.

The Act on Amendments to the Customs Act and the Value Added Tax Act (645 SE), initiated by the Government, was passed with 70 votes in favour. According to the amendments, the Customs Act is brought into conformity with the amendments concerning submission of the summary declaration made to the Community Customs Code and implementing provisions thereof, the competence of the customs with regard to controls of cash is extended and a basis for time-sensitive goods to cross the border in priority queue is established. Also, several amendments concerning technical norms and wording are made. The Act enters into force on 1 May 2010. Nobody voted against the Act and nobody abstained.
 
The Act on Amendments to the Social Welfare Act (659 SE), initiated by the Government, was passed with 77 votes in favour. The purpose of the Act is to clearly regulate the fire safety requirements for the premises where childcare service is provided and to thereby ensure the safety of the children staying there. According to the amendments, fire safety requirements similar to those of pre-school child care institutions will apply for the premises where childcare service is provided (in the case when the childcare service is provided for more than ten children). Clause 1 1) of the Act concerning the information system created for ensuring availability of places at pre-school child care institutions and increasing transparency enters into force on 1 April 2010. Nobody voted against the Act and nobody abstained.
 
The Resolution on amendments to the Resolution on the formation of the Security Authorities Surveillance Committee (661 OE), submitted by the Social Democratic Party Faction, was passed with 71 votes in favour. According to the Resolution, Jüri Tamm is appointed a member of the Security Authorities Surveillance Committee instead of Kalvi Kõva. Nobody voted against the Resolution, one member of the Riigikogu abstained.
 
On the motion of the National Defence Committee, the first reading of the Bill on Amendments to the Penal Code and the Probation Supervision Act (662 SE), initiated by the same Committee, was concluded. The initiation of the Bill was motivated by the need to bring the Chapter of the Penal Code which provides offences relating to the national defence into conformity with the Acts regulating the service in the Defence Forces and other legislation. The Penal Code uses the concepts of “garrison regulations” and “Defence Forces official” which have no content in today’s national defence law and which cannot be applied in penal law. Therefore, these concepts will be omitted from the Penal Code pursuant to this Bill. The Bill was sent to the second reading.
 
The Riigikogu Press Service
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