Riigikogu
Riigikogu
Skip navigation

Riigikogu

Today, the Riigikogu concluded the first reading of the Bill initiated by the Government under which a motor vehicle tax would be established in Estonia from the beginning of next year.

At the beginning of the sitting, members of the Riigikogu delivered numerous draft Resolutions and Bills and submitted numerous interpellations. The accepting of draft Resolutions and Bills and interpellations was terminated by a resolution of the Board of the Riigikogu at 2.45 p.m. Thereafter members of the Riigikogu kept raising points of order for another half an hour and parliament started the deliberation of the Motor Vehicle Tax Bill at around 3.15 pm.

The Motor Vehicle Tax Bill (364 SE), initiated by the Government, will establish a two-component motor vehicle tax in Estonia from the beginning of next year. According to the Bill, the tax will consist, first, of a component to be paid by motor vehicle owners on an annual basis on vehicles registered in the motor register. The rate of vehicle tax for passenger cars will consist of a base component, a specific CO2 emissions component and a gross weight component. Second, a motor vehicle registration fee will be established which will be paid before the registration of passenger cars and vans in the motor register. In the formula for the registration fee, the CO2 component will be larger to encourage the purchase of less polluting vehicles, and the amount of the fee will also be affected by the age of the vehicle.

The purpose of the motor vehicle tax will be to direct people to make more environmentally friendly choices when acquiring new vehicles and to support the use of old cars until the end of their useful life. The tax will make the acquisition and ownership of passenger cars 5 to 15 percent more expensive compared to today. More polluting and heavier cars will get a higher tax burden, and the tax burden will decrease as the vehicle ages.

According to the Bill, emergency vehicles, vehicles intended for use by disabled persons and, on the basis of international agreements, vehicles of foreign missions will be exempt from the motor vehicle tax and the registration fee. According to the Bill, the Tax and Customs Board will collect the motor vehicle tax and the Transport Administration will collect the registration fee.

During the debate, Andrei Korobeinik from the Centre Party Group, Helir-Valdor Seeder from Isamaa Parliamentary Group, Toomas Uibo from Estonia 200 Parliamentary Group, Annely Akkermann from the Reform Party Group and Siim Pohlak from the Estonian Conservative People’s Party Group took the floor.

The Centre Party Group, the Estonian Conservative People’s Party Group and Isamaa Parliamentary Group moved to reject the Bill at the first reading, but the plenary did not support the motion. 27 members of the Riigikogu supported rejection and 52 were against.

Three other Bills passed the first reading

The Bill on Amendments to the Electricity Market Act and Other Acts (termination of the universal service and the ensuring of security of supply) (351 SE), initiated by the Government, passed the first reading in the Riigikogu. It will enable termination of the provision of the universal service in electricity sale and will strengthen security of energy supply.

Universal service was set up to put a cap on the price of electricity and thereby protect people from the extremely high electricity bills of two winters ago. By now, electricity prices have fallen and people who are still using the universal service have found themselves in a worse situation compared to those who buy electricity at the exchange price. The termination of the service will bring down the price of electricity for them. The Bill provides for the termination of the universal service from 1 May this year.

With the Bill, a legal framework for the introduction of a reserve capacity mechanism for electrical energy will be created, the administrative costs related to the LNG loading quay and infrastructure will be included in the strategic gas stocks payments, and the Competition Authority will be given the right to initiate misdemeanour proceedings if a seller is found to have resold gas acquired from the strategic gas stock to a consumer at a price higher than its acquisition price.

Mart Maastik from Isamaa Parliamentary Group took the floor during the debate.

The Bill on Amendments to the Aliens Act (European Union Blue Card) (349 SE), initiated by the Government, passed the first reading. Its aim is to bring the Act into conformity with a European Union directive and to facilitate third-country nationals taking up highly qualified employment.

Member States will be able to maintain their national schemes concerning highly qualified workers in parallel with the EU Blue Card system. At the same time, the new rules will introduce several provisions to ensure that EU Blue Card holders and their family members would not find themselves in a more disadvantaged situation than holders of national permits.

The Bill will specify among other things the definition of higher professional qualifications and the educational requirements that EU Blue Card holders must meet in terms of their education. It will also regulate the higher professional skills which are considered equivalent to the knowledge, skills and competence attested by higher education qualifications for the purpose of applying for a Blue Card.

According to the Bill, the person will need to have entered into an employment contract for at least six months instead of the current one year to apply for a Blue Card. The period for which a Blue Card holder is allowed to be unemployed will also be brought into conformity with the directive. Currently, a Blue Card holder can be unemployed once for up to three months during the period of its validity. In the future, they can be unemployed for a total of up to three months during the period of validity of their Blue Card if they have held a Blue Card for less than two years, and for a total of up to six months if they have held a Blue Card for at least two years. The Bill will also specify the conditions for mobility for EU Blue Card holders and will establish more favourable conditions for family reunification.

During the debate, Helir-Valdor Seeder from Isamaa Parliamentary Group and Urve Tiidus from the Reform Party Group took the floor.

Isamaa Parliamentary Group moved to reject the Bill at the first reading, but the motion was not supported. Six members of the Riigikogu supported rejection and 48 were against.

The Bill on Amendments to the Precious Metal Articles Act, the State Fees Act and the Equipment Safety Act (363 SE), initiated by the Government, also passed the first reading. It will eliminate the restrictions that have become unreasonable for manufacturers, importers, and sellers of articles of gold and silver.

Under the current regulation, manufacturers and importers of articles of precious metal must affix their sponsor’s marks to articles which must be entered in the state register of sponsor’s marks. The Bill will enable the data concerning sponsor’s marks to be submitted electronically and will extend the validity of the registrations of sponsor marks from one year to ten years. The Bill will also eliminate the requirement to submit physical samples and will reduce the volume of the data presented in sales documents. For example, it will no longer be mandatory to present the mass of articles.

In addition, the Bill will repeal the restrictions on the retail of articles of precious metal. The explanatory memorandum notes that currently, for example, watches made of precious metal and gold jewellery must not be sold in street trading, on markets, in doorstep sales, at public events or in stands. In the future, this will however be permitted. At the same time, the state fee for the registration of sponsor’s marks will be increased from 20 to 30 euro, and the rate of non-compliance levy which was established in 2004 will be increased from 640 to 9,600 euro. The registration of sponsor’s marks will be transferred from Metrosert Ltd to the Consumer Protection and Technical Regulatory Authority which has better technological capacity and practical competence for this.

Mart Maastik from Isamaa Parliamentary Group took the floor during the debate.

The deliberation of 14 Bills will be deferred

At the sitting of the Riigikogu, the deliberation of 14 Bills was cancelled because the members of the Riigikogu who were supposed to present the Bills as representatives of initiators were not present in the session hall. The Riigikogu Rules of Procedure and Internal Rules Act provides that, where the presenter is not present at the deliberation of an item, the chair of the sitting does not open the deliberation of the agenda item and the deliberation is deferred to the following working week.

The first reading of the Bill on Amendments to the Value-Added Tax Act (263 SE), initiated by Members of the Riigikogu Rain Epler, Ants Frosch and Siim Pohlak, the Bill on Amendments to the Value-Added Tax Act (286 SE), initiated by the Estonian Conservative People’s Party Group,  the Bill on Amendments to the Income Tax Act (265 SE), initiated by Members of the Riigikogu Siim Pohlak, Henn Põlluaas and Rain Epler,  the Bill on Amendments to the Income Tax Act (266 SE), initiated by Members of the Riigikogu Rene Kokk, Leo Kunnas, Evelin Poolamets, Siim Pohlak and Martin Helme, the Bill on Amendments to the Income Tax Act (267 SE), initiated by Members of the Riigikogu Arvo Aller, Kert Kingo and Evelin Poolamets, the Bill on Amendments to the Income Tax Act (268 SE), initiated by Members of the Riigikogu Kert Kingo, Martin Helme and Rene Kokk,  the Bill on Amendments to the Income Tax Act (269 SE), initiated by Members of the Riigikogu Martin Helme and Siim Pohlak,  the Bill on Amendments to the Income Tax Act (270 SE), initiated by Members of the Riigikogu Arvo Aller, Leo Kunnas and Rain Epler, the Bill on Amendments to the Estonian Public Broadcasting Act (165 SE), initiated by Members of the Riigikogu Kalle Grünthal and Alar Laneman,  the Bill on Amendments to the Municipal Council Election Act (166 SE), initiated by Members of the Riigikogu Henn Põlluaas, Helle-Moonika Helme and Mart Helme,  the Bill on Amendments to the Municipal Council Election Act and Other Acts (246 SE), initiated by Members of the Riigikogu Henn Põlluaas, Helle-Moonika Helme, Mart Helme and Jaak Valge,  the Bill on Amendments to the Government of the Republic Act (276 SE), initiated by the Estonian Conservative People’s Party Group,  the Bill on Amendments to the Municipal Council Election Act (287 SE), initiated by the Estonian Conservative People’s Party Group, and  the Bill on Amendments to the Local Government Organisation Act (289 SE), initiated by the Estonian Conservative People’s Party Group, is deferred from the agenda for today’s sitting.

The sitting ended at 7.24 p.m.

Photos (Author: Erik Peinar / Chancellery of the Riigikogu)

Verbatim record of the sitting (in Estonian)

Video recording will be available to watch later on the Riigikogu YouTube channel.

Riigikogu Press Service
Karin Kangro
+372 631 6356, +372 520 0323
[email protected]
Questions: [email protected]

Feedback