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At the beginning of the Riigikogu sitting, the members of the Riigikogu commemorated the victims of the March deportation.

The Bill on the Ratification of “The Internal Agreement between the Representatives of the Governments of the Member States, meeting within the Council, on the financing of European Union aid under the multi-annual financial framework for the period 2014 to 2020, in accordance with the ACP-EU Partnership Agreement, and on the allocation of the financial assistance for the Overseas Countries and Territories to which part Four of the Treaty on the Functioning of the EU applies” (585 SE), initiated by the Government on 27 January, passed the first reading in the Riigikogu.

The African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States (hereinafter ACP) was established by the Georgetown Agreement in 1975 in order to represent the interests of these states in negotiations with the European Community (hereinafter EC). In 1975, the EC and the 71 ACP countries concluded the Lomé Convention in the capital of Togo which determined the general aims and principles of the European Community in relations with the ACP countries.

As of 23 June 2000, the economic and political relations of ACP countries with the EU are regulated by the Partnership Agreement between the ACP Group of States and the European Community and its Member States (hereinafter Cotonou Agreement) signed in Cotonou, the largest city in Benin, which entered into force at the end of the ratification process in April 2003. The Cotonou Agreement determines the principles of political and economic cooperation of the EU and the ACP countries. Estonia acceded to the Cotonou Agreement pursuant to Article 6(4) of the Act of Accession of the Treaty of Accession to the EU.

The Internal Agreement determines the conditions for the use of the resources of the 11th European Development Fund (hereinafter EDF) in order to allow for the use of EDF funds to help the ACP countries. Through the EDF, Estonia will support reduction of poverty and sustainable economic development in partner states which will have a long-term favourable impact on the security of both the EU and Estonia. With its support, Estonia will help control migration flows and mitigate the effects of natural and human-made crises and famines. In the Internal Agreement, special attention is paid to the improvement of the efficiency of EU aid to ACP countries. The implementation of the EDF will have an indirect positive impact on Estonia’s position in international development cooperation and in relations with the ACP countries.

The 11th EDF consists of an amount of EUR 30 506 million. Estonia’s contribution accounts for 0.08635% of the total of the 11th EDF budget, that is, ca 26.3 million euro during the period 2014–2020.

The Internal Agreement enters into force when all Member States will have notified the General Secretariat of the Council of the EU that they have approved the Agreement according to the requirements arising from their Constitutions. In Estonia, the Internal Agreement will have to be ratified in the Riigikogu on the basis of clause 121 4) of the Constitution.

The verbatim record of the sitting (in Estonian) 

The Riigikogu Press Service