Today, a debate was held at the Riigikogu on the activities of the Government in implementing the European Union policy with reports delivered by Prime Minister Andrus Ansip and Chairman of the European Union Affairs Committee of the Riigikogu Marko Mihkelson.
The Chairman of the European Union Affairs Committee focused in his report on the role of the committee in EU policy implementing. According to Mihkelson, the Committee has followed very closely the activities of the Government related to the joining the euro zone and occurrences in the zone itself. „On behalf of the committee, I would like to commend the Estonian Government for successfully finalizing the process (joining the euro zone), which is of extreme importance to Estonia“, noted Mihkelson, and added that 1 January does not signify a finishing line, but a starting line.
Estonia, receiving the status of the state, where IT Agency headquarters would be located was mentioned as the second important achievement. „This decision is a good confirmation of the Estonian capability to reach compromise even with such significant and great partners as France. To this end a lot of work has been done at the diplomatic as well as political level, and the bulk of it was undoubtedly done by the respective unit of the ministry of the Interior“, said Mihkelson.
The Chairman commended smoothness of the EU national decision-making processes and good working relations between the Parliament and the Government. Mihkelson was convinced that a well functioning principle „one state, one position“ should be adhered to in the future. Discussions and open debates should be held at home, primarily in the committees of the Riigikogu. „Thereby we ensure best negotiation opportunities for Estonia as a whole“, he emphasized.
In Mihkelson’s opinion, future activities should be more committees’-centred and oriented. So far, this has been essentially unused possibility in better introducing Estonia’s positions to European legislators. Prior to the end of term of this composition of the Riigikogu, the Committee will hear the Estonia’s positions and activities related to the European Union „Common market initiative“. Re-launch of the internal market and eliminating of bottlenecks aim at establishing common market, which would create a favourable business environment and be beneficial to all consumers. Estonia has a chance to be an active contributor in this area.
In conclusion, the Chairman of the EU Affairs Committee added a small recommendation to the European Union Affairs Committee of the next composition of the Riigikogu: „The first half of 2018 will be marked by the first Estonian Presidency of the European Union. Although this does not directly relate to the next composition of the parliament, the preparations have to be made already by XII Riigikogu. The better we wish to be prepared for our task, the longer the preparation period has to be“.
Prime Minister Andrus Ansip emphasised in his report, in addition to the above-mentioned achievements, another success stories of joining the Schengen visa area, establishing of Estonia in the core of the European Union, agreements in the areas of climate and energy, as well as good use of benefits stemming from EU membership.
The speeches related to these issues were given by members of the Riigikogu Raivo Järvi, Enn Eesmaa, Aleksei Lotman, Sven Mikser and Mart Laar.
Riigikogu Press Service