The 36th Session of the Baltic Assembly, which was held in Tallinn today, adopted the Resolution which, among other things, includes recommendations on security and defence cooperation, joint procurements and the Eastern Partnership. The Resolution also contains proposals on receiving and integration of refugees, economic cooperation, Nord Stream 2, and on transport and infrastructure, in particular the Rail Baltic.
President of the Baltic Assembly and Head of the Estonian Delegation Aadu Must expressed his happiness that in recent years, the work of the BA had been organised on the basis of the model proposed by Estonia, according to which the focus of mutual cooperation was on the cooperation of the standing committees of the national parliaments in order to increase the efficiency of the BA.
Must stated that the cooperation of the Baltic States was not necessary, but compulsory. “Our voice sounds three times louder when we speak together compared to individually. Our actions are three times stronger when we act together compared to individually,” he emphasised. Must said that the cooperation between the Baltic States was trustful, committed and mutually supportive. He added that the cooperation of the Baltic States was so good that we were often called the Baltic family.
The President of the BA said that the Baltic States cooperated effectively in economy, the social sector, and in other areas. “Only a few years ago, joint procurement of medicines was considered impossible,” Must pointed out one great success. The issues of cross-border health care, security and securing of external borders were also discussed at the BA Session.
President of the Riigikogu (Parliament of Estonia) Eiki Nestor emphasised the importance of cooperation and ensuring of security in his opening speech to the 36th Session of the BA. “Secure Baltic Sea and sustainable Europe form the basis for the welfare of our citizens,” he said. “Whatever the future brings us, the fundamental values of Baltic cooperation are there and will always be. Similar historical experience and common values and traditions create a strong basis for cooperation in the spirit of true parliamentarism. A basis for cooperation that has been tested in crises and has no alternative.”
The President of the Riigikogu is convinced that the Baltic States have the readiness and the need to cooperate also in the name of a safe living environment, a sustainable infrastructure and energy policy, an innovative education and research system, and knowledge-based economy.
The cooperation assembly of the governments and the parliaments of the Baltic States – the Baltic Council – also held its sitting today. Chairman of the Cooperation Council of the Baltic Council of Ministers, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Estonia Sven Mikser emphasised at the Session of the 23rd Baltic Council that it was important to continue cooperation in the areas of the Eastern Partnership and security. He also thanked the Baltic Assembly for its contribution to the Eastern Partnership issues.
The meeting of the Presidium of the Baltic Assembly and the speakers of national parliaments also took place today. The Baltic Assembly Medals were presented to people who had contributed to strengthening the Baltic cooperation and unity. Joint Statement of the Baltic Assembly and the Baltic Council of Ministers was signed.
At the end of the BA Session, the Resolution was adopted, the Final Document was signed, and also the BA budget and working plan for the next year were adopted. Estonia passed the presidency of the Baltic Assembly and the Baltic Council of Ministers on to Lithuania. New President of the BA Valerijus Simulik addressed the Assembly and introduced the priorities of the Lithuanian presidency.
Full text of the Resolution (PDF, 236 kB) (in Estonian)
Full text of the Final Document (PDF, 132 kB) (in Estonian)
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