Today, President of the Riigikogu (Parliament of Estonia) Jüri Ratas met with President of the Chamber of Deputies of the Parliament of the Czech Republic Radek Vondráček via a video bridge. The meeting focused on developing of e-governance services and ensuring security in the use of digital data.
At the beginning of the meeting, Ratas emphasised that Estonia and the Czech Republic enjoyed excellent mutual relations, and recalled that this year was a special year in the relations of the two countries because we were celebrating 100 years of establishing and 30 years of re-establishing diplomatic relations.
“Our bilateral relations are very good,” Ratas said, and expressed hope that it would be possible to do even more in the field of digital cooperation. The Speaker of the Czech Chamber of Deputies also noted that they were interested in developing of e-services and the experiences of the Estonian X-Road. Ratas spoke of the importance of the security of data use, and about cybersecurity in a wider context. He added that the participation of Czechs in the NATO Centre of Excellence in Tallinn was another good example of fruitful cooperation.
The President of the Riigikogu thanked the Czech Republic for their contribution to ensuring the security of our region, and for the contribution of the Czech troops in eFP in Lithuania. Ratas recalled that the first air policing mission of the Czechs at Ämari Air Base had been historic, and said that Estonia would be very grateful if the Czech Republic again participated in the Baltic air policing mission.
Ratas invited his Czech counterpart to participate in the Three Seas Parliamentary Forum, which would be held in Estonia in June. Ratas said that since the Three Seas Initiative (3SI) had evolved into a practical cooperation format, it was important to also increase the cooperation between Parliaments. “We see the opportunity for the Parliaments to facilitate achieving the practical goals of the Three Seas Initiative,” he said. “Wider involvement of Parliaments can also add an important contribution to raising the visibility of the format and provides an excellent opportunity to reconfirm the countries’ commitment to the format.”
The Speaker of the Czech Chamber of Deputies gave an overview of the latest developments in relations with Russia. Ratas assured his counterpart that Estonia followed the situation closely. “Estonia has expressed our solidarity and full support to the Czech Republic. We think that actions of Russia have blatantly violated Czech sovereignty.”
Photos of the meeting (Erik Peinar, Riigikogu)
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