The meetings of First Vice-President of the European Parliament Roberta Metsola with Vice-President of the Riigikogu (Parliament of Estonia) Hanno Pevkur, Deputy Chair of the European Union Affairs Committee of the Riigikogu Riina Sikkut and other members of the Riigikogu focused on the issues relating to Belarus, the development of Europe, the green transition, and remote working of the parliament.
Vice-President of the Riigikogu Hanno Pevkur and Roberta Metsola spoke about digitalisation and the work of the Riigikogu in the COVID-19 crisis. Pevkur underlined that the whole Riigikogu was able to work via the video bridge, but presently there was no need for it, as most of the MPs were vaccinated. “Working online is still an excellent solution for crisis situation, and it is good to have a readiness for teleworking when necessary,” Pevkur said.
The hybrid attack by Belarus and migration issues were also discussed at the meeting. Pevkur emphasised that we had to defend all our borders, and to invest in land borders as well. He underlined that the problem did not concern only the Estonian border construction, but also defending of all external borders of the European Union and NATO. Speaking of the situation on the Belarusian border, Pevkur pointed out that Lithuania’s burden was the greatest, but Estonia was also trying to contribute by sending our people and equipment to help them.
The hybrid attack by Belarus, the situation in Poland and Lithuania as well as the events in Afghanistan were also discussed at Metsola’s meeting with Deputy Chair of the European Union Affairs Committee of the Riigikogu Riina Sikkut, Chairman of the National Defence Committee of the Riigikogu Enn Eesmaa and Deputy Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Riigikogu Mihhail Lotman. Besides that, the Conference on the Future of Europe was spoken of.
Sikkut underlined that the Conference on the Future of Europe should not be overshadowed by other current topics. She pointed out that the Conference should focus attention to issues that are important for citizens. “First, we have to understand what issues citizens want to be solved,” Sikkut said. “The Conference on the Future largely relies on the ideas of citizens and their active involvement.”
Issues relating to the achievement of the climate targets of the European Union were discussed at the meeting with Deputy Chair of the European Union Affairs Committee of the Riigikogu Riina Sikkut, members of the European Union Affairs Committee of the Riigikogu Urve Tiidus and Timo Suslov and member of the Economic Affairs Committee of the Riigikogu Annely Akkermann.
It was admitted that the targets for a greener Europe were very diverse, and the situations and the problems that needed solution varied greatly by countries. Sikkut said that it was important to explain to everybody what needed to be done to achieve the targets, for example, in agriculture. “In this regard, it is important to bear in mind that, by recycling materials, we make our own lives better – we are not doing this for anybody else.”
It was agreed that the European Parliament considered it important that the Member States gave as detailed information as possible and gave specific examples in order to identify the points of concern for green topics, because only then would it be possible to address the problems in depth and to resolve them. The price of energy, power connections and green fuels were also discussed at the meetings.
Photos of the meetings Erik Peinar, Chancellery of the Riigikogu
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