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On Monday, the joint meeting of the European Union Affairs Committee and the Foreign Affairs Committee expressed their support for Estonia’s positions at the upcoming European Council. Among other things, Estonia supports the idea of making top level discussions of the Common Security and Defence Policy a regular event.

“It is undoubtedly most important for Estonia that the EU sends a clear message on the seriousness of the European common security and defence issues,” said the Chairman of the EU Affairs Committee of the Riigikogu Arto Aas. He added that in a situation where the US presence in Europe is lessening rather than increasing, yet threats to security have not disappeared, European countries must make more efforts themselves to increase the security of their own region. 

Estonia thinks that constant investments in the defence capacity are needed to carry out the Common Security and Defence Policy. Estonia will continue to contribute two per cent of its GDP to national defence also the next year. In addition to this, Estonia highlights the need to deal with cyber defence issues.

“Estonia also unequivocally supports the organisations of joint procurements in the field of security and defence, which helps to improve the use of resources and provides valuable experiences of practical cooperation,” Aas added.

The conclusions of the Council set out the strategic action guidelines. The progress made in these actions is then assessed by the European Council in June 2015. The conclusions of the Council call on Member States to strengthen their defence cooperation. Increasing the efficiency and visibility of the Common Security and Defence Policy, enhancing defence capacity development and strengthening European defence industry are also defined as important activities in the conclusions.

The European Council will take place in Brussels on 19–20 December. The agenda of the Council includes Common Security and Defence Policy, Economic and Monetary Union, economic and social policy, enlargement, migration and energy.

Prime Minister Andrus Ansip also took part in discussing Estonia’s positions in the EU Affairs Committee.

The Riigikogu Press Service