Today and tomorrow, representatives of the national parliaments of the European Union member states and representatives of the European Parliament meet in Tallinn, at Saku Arena, to discuss the issues relating to the future of the EU, the Digital Single Market, the external dimension of migration, security and the role of parliaments.
The Chair of the meeting, Chairman of the European Union Affairs Committee of the Riigikogu (Parliament of Estonia) Toomas Vitsut believes that the key to unified Europe is common understanding of the solutions to the challenges faced by Europe. “It is important to share the conviction that everybody benefits when we act together, and to define the common perspective we want to reach,” Vitsut said before the meeting.
Altogether five sessions will be held during the two days of the Plenary Meeting of the Conference of Parliamentary Committees for Union Affairs of Parliaments of the European Union (COSAC). At the end of the meeting, it is planned to adopt the Contribution and the Conclusions. The text of these documents can be found at the web page parleu2017.ee.
The opening session today will focus on the future of the European Union. President of the Republic of Estonia Kersti Kaljulaid, Chairperson of the Committee on Constitutional Affairs of the European Parliament Danuta Maria Hübner and the EU Chief Negotiator for Brexit Michel Barnier, who will give an overview of the Brexit negotiation process, will be the keynote speakers.
Bringing Europe closer to its citizens will be the topic of the second session. Katrin Auel from Vienna Institute for Advanced Studies, Pieter Omtzigt from the House of Representatives of the Netherlands and Kristian Vigenin from the National Assembly of Bulgaria will share the best practices of parliaments.
The first day is ended by the discussion on the Digital Single Market and the development of e-services. The speakers of this session are Deputy Secretary General for Communications and State Information Systems at the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications of Estonia Siim Sikkut, Chairman of the Committee on the Affairs of the European Union of the German Bundestag Gunther Krichbaum and President of the European Affairs Committee of the French Senate Jean Bizet.
On Tuesday, the meeting continues with an overview of building of an effective and sustainable Security Union, which will be given by European Commissioner for Security Union Julian King.
Deputy Director General for Migration of the Directorate General for Migration and Home Affairs of the European Commission Simon Mordue together with Edward Zammit Lewis from the House of Representatives of Malta and Anne-Mari Virolainen from the Parliament of Finland will try to explain how to prevent and fight against illegal migration.
The COSAC Plenary Meeting will be opened by President of the Riigikogu Eiki Nestor. The meeting will be chaired by Chairman of the European Union Affairs Committee of the Riigikogu Toomas Vitsut. The sessions will be moderated by members of the European Union Affairs Committee Monika Haukanõmm, Kalle Palling, Marianne Mikko and Jaak Madison. The Estonian delegation also includes Tiina Kangro and Oudekki Loone.
The meeting will be streamed live on the web page parleu2017.ee, where you can also find the programme of the meeting. Photo and video materials will be made available as soon as possible on the Riigikogu Flickr account and in YouTube. We will share the thoughts of the participants of the conference through the social media on Facebook and on the Riigikogu Twitter account.
Members of the press who wish to cover the meeting are asked to accredit themselves on the web page.
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