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At today’s sitting, the Riigikogu passed nine Acts and a Resolution and received an overview of courts administration.

The Riigikogu passed the Motor Vehicle Tax Act (364 SE), initiated by the Government. According to it a two-component motor vehicle tax will be established in Estonia from the beginning of next year.

The tax will consist, first, of a component to be paid by motor vehicle owners every year 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 have to be paid upon the registration of passenger cars and vans in the motor register.

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.

According to the Act, emergency vehicles, vehicles belonging to private persons which have been converted or adapted for use by disabled people 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 Act, the Tax and Customs Board will collect the motor vehicle tax and the Transport Administration will collect the registration fee.

The registration fee will also be payable when a vehicle already registered in the Estonian motor register changes ownership for the first time, provided that no registration fee has been paid previously for that vehicle. The average registration fee will be less than ten per cent of the approximate value of the vehicle. According to the Act, the rates of the registration fee will increase in 2028 and 2031.

No registration fee will be payable when a person purchases a vehicle from a leasing company and registers it in their name, or when a person inherits a vehicle and registers it in their name. For such vehicles, the registration fee will be applied in the event of a next sales transaction. It will be possible to apply for a refund of the registration fee for vehicles up to ten years old that are taken out of the country. The age of the vehicle will reduce the amount of both the registration fee and the motor vehicle tax for both natural and legal persons and for both passenger cars and vans.

During the debate, Mart Helme took the floor on behalf of the Estonian Conservative People’s Party Group, Andrei Korobeinik on behalf of the Estonian Centre Party Group, Aivar Kokk on behalf of Isamaa Parliamentary Group, Annely Akkermann on behalf of the Estonian Reform Party Group and Toomas Uibo on behalf of Estonia 200 Parliamentary Group.

57 members of the Riigikogu voted in favour of passing the Act and 28 voted against.

Overview of courts administration

Chief Justice of Supreme Court Villu Kõve gave an overview of courts administration before the Riigikogu. According to him, the judicial system is generally functioning, impartial administration of justice and the resolution of court cases is ensured, generally within a reasonable time. However, he noted that the worrying trend of slowing down the resolution of cases, that had also been highlighted the year before, had worsened.

Speaking about procedural deadlines, Kõve said that, overall, they had increased compared to last year. For example, the average length of proceedings in the adjudication of civil matters in district courts has increased, as have general proceedings on criminal cases in district courts, although the number of offences has decreased. According to Kõve, the situation with administrative cases is the most worrying as their number and the length of proceedings has increased. The biggest area of concern is circuit courts of appeal.

According to the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, the speed and efficiency of court proceedings is gradually deteriorating. “In general, judges feel that this is due to cases becoming increasingly complex and extensive. In administrative cases, this is complemented by the number of referrals to the courts, which is facilitated, among other things, by very low state fees and, in the event of losing the case, by the absence of the risk of having to bear the procedural costs of the opposing public authority. Workload is also affected by deficient procedural documents being lodged and small availability and poor quality of legal aid,” Kõve said.

He added that the continuing generational shift was also an important reason for the increase in workload. “No cases are handed out to retiring judges near the end of their service and they settle what few cases they have in their last year of work because we have a perception that once a person leaves the judiciary, they can’t sign anything after that,” Kõve said. “Inevitably, new judges who take up their posts work part-time at first and need time to settle in. Increasingly, it seems, they cannot always be expected to keep up with the work pace of the previous generation of judges.”

The Chief Justice of the Supreme Court expressed hope that members of the Riigikogu, as legislators, were ready to make their contribution to making the judicial system more efficient, both through legislative amendments and budgetary decisions.

During the debate, Kalle Laanet took the floor on behalf of the Estonian Reform Party Group, Varro Vooglaid on behalf of the Estonian Conservative People’s Party Group and Anastassia Kovalenko-Kõlvart on behalf of the Estonian Centre Party Group.

The Riigikogu passed eight other Acts and a Resolution

The Riigikogu passed the Act on Amendments to the Penal Code and Amendments to Other Associated Acts (increasing the fine unit) (415 SE), initiated by the Government. According to it, the amount of the fine unit that is the basis for imposing fines provided for in the Penal Code will be doubled, that is, it will rise from four euro to eight euro, from the beginning of 2025. The amount of fine unit has not been changed for over 20 years.

According to the Act, the calculation of the amount of the fine will become more flexible, as instead of the current minimum of three units, a fine to the extent of one fine unit can also be imposed for a misdemeanour. Under the Act, the maximum amount of fine applied for a misdemeanour will rise from 1,200 euro to 2,400 euro.

At the same time, the Act creates an exception for minors. When imposing fines on them, half the rate of the fine will have to be taken as the basis. This means that while the Act provides for a fine of up to 300 fine units as the maximum permitted punishment, it will be possible to impose a fine of up to 150 units on a minor for the same offence.

The Traffic Act stipulates that if the speed limit is exceeded, the basis for calculating a cautionary fine will be seven euro instead of the current five euro. In connection with that, the maximum cautionary fine allowed under the written caution procedure will increase from 300 euro to 420 euro. The maximum fixed penalty applied in alternative proceedings will increase to 160 euro, while the Act also introduces the possibility to apply for payment of a fixed penalty in instalments.

During the debate, Anastassia Kovalenko-Kõlvart took the floor on behalf of the Estonian Centre Party Group, Kert Kingo on behalf of the Estonian Conservative People’s Party Group and Liisa Pakosta on behalf of Estonia 200 Parliamentary Group.

58 members of the Riigikogu voted in favour of passing the Act and 24 voted against.

The Act on Amendments to the Energy Sector Organisation Act and Other Acts (356 SE), initiated by the Government,  transposes the principles and obligations facilitating the promotion of renewable energy arising from a European Union directive. They will help achieve the EU’s energy policy objective of increasing the use of sustainable and renewable energy. The amendments will concern in particular plants producing biofuels, bioliquids and biomass fuels from biomass or using them for energy production. The majority of the directive has been transposed into Estonian legal space in 2022.

In the light of a reasoned opinion of the European Commission, the Act provides for additional conditions arising from the directive on the basis of which energy produced will be counted as renewable energy and subsidies will be paid. Besides that, the Act brings into law precise terms that denote the concepts relating to the production, consumption, and supply of renewable energy.

During the debate, Rain Epler took the floor on behalf of the Estonian Conservative People’s Party Group.

61 members of the Riigikogu voted in favour of passing the Act and 19 voted against.

The Credit Collectors and Purchasers Act (376 SE), initiated by the Government, regulates the activities of debt collection agencies engaged in credit agreements and the persons linked to them and will bring the activities of debt collection agencies under the control of the Financial Supervision Authority.

When the Act enters into force, debt collection agencies will have to begin to apply for an authorisation from the Financial Supervision Authority and the Financial Supervision Authority will receive powers to exercise supervision over credit collectors. In addition, the Act gives the Supervision Authority various sanctioning powers starting from issuing precepts to misdemeanour proceedings. The maximum amount of penalties will be 100,000 euro for natural persons and one million euro for legal entities.

The Act provides that the minimum capital requirement for a debt collection agency is 25,000 euro and provides for the rules as to how credit collectors must hold the funds received from debtors. Integrity requirements for managers and owners of credit collectors are also provided. Amongst others, a requirement is established that persons who have earlier engaged in usury cannot be managers of credit collectors.

The scope of regulation of the Act includes debt collection agencies that are engaged in the collection of debts arising from loans granted by banks and other creditors, or in the factoring of such debts. It is expected that the Act will apply to a larger part of the Estonian debt collection market, estimated at seven to eight debt collection agencies operating in Estonia.

During the debate, Eduard Odinets took the floor on behalf of the Social Democratic Party Group and Andrei Korobeinik on behalf of the Estonian Centre Party Group.

75 members of the Riigikogu voted in favour of passing the Act. There was one abstention.

The Act on Amendments to the Motor Insurance Act and Amendments to Other Associated Acts (400 SE), initiated by the Government, transposes into Estonian law the amendments to the European Union Motor Insurance Directive.

According to the Act, personal light electric vehicles with a maximum design speed of more than 25 km/h, or a maximum net weight of more than 25 kg and a maximum design speed of more than 14 km/h will have to be insured. Any vehicle moving on land propelled solely by an engine will have to be insured. A derogation is made for motorised wheelchairs and vehicles used only in confined areas, such as lawn tractors. In order to make it easier to understand whether compulsory motor insurance cover extends to a vehicle or not, the Estonian Motor Insurance Bureau is planning to publish help material online.

In addition to the requirement to insure personal light electric vehicles, the principle is transposed into Estonian law that, in the event of the bankruptcy of an insurance company, each Member State must have a guarantee fund to compensate damages instead of the insolvent company. In Estonia, the Estonian Motor Insurance Bureau is going to be the fund and collect funds from insurance companies to cover insolvency.

The Act also raises the limits of maximum amounts of insurance cover that are compensated: from 1.2 million euro to 1.3 million euro in the event of damage to property and from 5.6 million euro to 6.45 million euro in the event of personal injury. According to the explanatory memorandum, the average damage to property in Estonia is around 2,200 euro and personal injury 4,200 euro. The greatest motor insurance damage ever in Estonia occurred in 2018, amounting to 5.6 million euro, 5.4 million euro of which was personal injury.

In the course of the proceedings, the Riigikogu decided to make an amendment to the Bill which allows victims of traffic accidents to have access to information regarding the amounts of the compensations for non-patrimonial damage ordered previously. At present, insurance providers have access to such comparative statistics, but victims do not. Thus, victims are currently in an unequal information monopoly situation.

During the debate, Anastassia Kovalenko-Kõlvart took the floor on behalf of the Estonian Centre Party Group.

68 members of the Riigikogu voted in favour of passing the Act.

The aim of the Act on Amendments to the Security Activities Act (413 SE), initiated by the Legal Affairs Committee, is to resolve the shortcomings identified in the Security Activities Act due to enter into force on 1 July this year. The Act omits from the scope of application of the Security Activities Act the internal security organisers who have not hired a security guard or a security firm but use only technical means and their own staff to guard their property. According to an amendment, in the future, they will not have to meet the same requirements as security firms, including the requirement to have completed specialised training.

Another amendment provides that the current procedure remains in place where security firms must store for one month the recordings of the technical means used when guarding and protecting the object to be secured and when maintaining order. The Act due to enter into force this summer contains a provision that would require recordings to be stored for six months. According to an amendment, the six-month storage obligation remains in place only for the cases where an act containing elements of offence is identified when processing the recording.

In addition, a specifying provision is introduced in the Act to establish an explicit requirement for security officers to complete, in addition to continuing training, studies for either guard, security guard or security manager, respectively.

68 members of the Riigikogu voted in favour of passing the Act.

Under the Act on Amendments to the State Fees Act and Amendments to Other Associated Acts (417 SE), initiated by the Government, several state fee rates in the area of government of the Ministry of the Interior will rise from the beginning of 2025. According to the explanatory memorandum, the fee rates have been staying at the same level for years and no longer cover the costs relating to the acts performed.

The Act amends the rates of the state fees for applications for the acquisition and restoration of citizenship and release from citizenship, applications for identity documents, applications for residence permits, for long-stay visas and for the registration of short-term employment, population register acts and acts performed under the Weapons Act and the Security Activities Act.

For example, according to the Act, the state fee paid upon applying for an ID card will rise from 30 euro to 45 euro, and the fee upon applying for a passport will rise from 45 euro to 60 euro. The state fee for entries concerning marriage will increase from 30 euro to 70 euro and the fee for entries concerning divorce will increase from 50 euro to 90 euro. Reduced state fees will continue to apply for children, pensioners, disabled people and, in the case of travel documents, beneficiaries of international protection.

During the debate, Anastassia Kovalenko-Kõlvart took the floor on behalf of the Estonian Centre Party Group and Arvo Aller on behalf of the Estonian Conservative People’s Party Group.

53 members of the Riigikogu voted in favour of passing the Act and 22 voted against.

The Act on Amendments to the Traffic Act and the Police and Border Guard Act (429 SE), initiated by the Government, establishes clearer rules for the use of personal light electric vehicles and prohibits the stopping of motor vehicles on the pavement.

According to the Act, electric scooters must be parked parallel to the pavement edge and, where possible, no further than 20 centimetres from the edge. An at least 1.5-metre-wide pavement section must remain clear for passage for other users. Local governments will have the right to restrict the speed limit for electric scooters where this is necessary, for example near kindergartens and on heavy-traffic streets.

It also introduces a maximum permitted alcohol limit of 0.5 milligrams of alcohol in the blood or 0.25 milligrams in one litre of breath for personal light electric vehicle drivers, cyclists, and light moped drivers. Until now, upon checking, the police have had to make a subjective assessment if a person is intoxicated. In order to increase safety, motor vehicles must maintain a 1.5-metre lateral distance where the width of the road permits when passing a cyclist or a scooter or a moped driver.

Amendments are also made in respect of the stopping of motor vehicles on the pavement. In the future, it will be allowed to stop or park on the pavement only where the traffic sign permits it. Up to now, the principle has been that it is allowed to stop a motor vehicle on the pavement to load goods, even in the case where no preconditions have been established therefor in terms of traffic management. The marking of places for loading goods can be organised by the municipality, the possessor of land, a company or, for example, the apartment association.

The maximum fine rates related to the violation of the requirements for stopping and parking also increase to influence parking offenders. In addition, the Act makes an amendment to terminate the database of the automated traffic supervision system and to transfer its data to the police database POLIS.

According to a national derogation included in the course of the proceedings, under certain conditions, holders of a category B driving licence also have the right to drive category A1 vehicles.

During the debate, Mart Maastik took the floor on behalf of Isamaa Parliamentary Group, Raimond Kaljulaid on behalf of the Social Democratic Party Group, Kristo Enn Vaga on behalf of the Estonian Reform Party Group and Anastassia Kovalenko-Kõlvart on behalf of the Estonian Centre Party Group.

55 members of the Riigikogu voted in favour of passing the Act and 14 voted against. There was one abstention.

The purpose of the Act on Amendments to the Aviation Act (436 SE), initiated by the Government, is to organise the legal landscape for military aviation. The Act will allow the Estonian Military Academy and the Estonian Aviation Academy to cooperate from the new academic year. The Military Academy wishes to start training in aircraft piloting and to procure a service regarding pilot training from the Aviation Academy. For this, it is necessary that the Minister of Climate be able to grant the Aviation Academy the right to train the Military Academy cadets under its certificate.

Provisions delegating authority are also organised in the Act so that the necessary areas can be properly regulated in military aviation Regulations. Among other things, defence industry companies will have the opportunity to expand their activities in the field of military aviation, as the unit engaged in the supervision of military aviation within the composition of the Defence Forces will be able to grant them the relevant certificates to provide a service or sell a product, such as an unmanned aerial vehicle or its parts.

68 members of the Riigikogu voted in favour of passing the Act. There was one abstention.

The Resolution of the Riigikogu “Supporting the adoption of nuclear energy in Estonia” (431 OE), submitted by 55 members of the Riigikogu, enables the start of the preparations for the adoption of nuclear energy in Estonia and the establishment of an appropriate legal framework for this purpose.

The Resolution does not grant the right to build a nuclear power station in Estonia. The Riigikogu made a fundamental decision to support considering nuclear energy production in Estonia. The Resolution is mainly based on the analysis conducted by the Nuclear Energy Working Group which concluded that the adoption of nuclear energy in Estonia is feasible.

Preparation for the adoption of nuclear energy will mean the drafting of the Nuclear Energy and Safety Act and, if necessary, amending and supplementing the existing legislation, the establishment of an institution regulating the safe use of nuclear energy, and the development of sectoral competences.

According to the Resolution, the National Development Plan of the Energy Sector Until 2035 will have to address the impacts involved in the adoption of nuclear energy in order to ensure security of energy supply during the transition to climate-neutral energy production.

According to the Resolution of the Riigikogu, when establishing the regulatory framework, it will have to be ensured that the risks related to national security, financing and the form of ownership are thoroughly assessed.

During the debate, Tiit Maran from the Social Democratic Party Group, Rain Epler from the Estonian Conservative People’s Party Group, Mart Maastik and Aivar Kokk from Isamaa Parliamentary Group, Toomas Uibo and Liisa Pakosta from Estonia 200 Parliamentary Group, Andres Sutt and Mario Kadastik from Estonian Reform Party Group and Andrei Korobeinik and Lauri Laats from the Estonian Centre Party Group took the floor. Unaffiliated Members of the Riigikogu Kalle Grünthal and Züleyxa Izmailova also took part in the debate.

The Social Democratic Party Group moved to suspend the second reading of the draft Resolution. 26 members of the Riigikogu voted in favour of the motion and 40 voted against. Thus, the motion was not supported.

In the final vote, 41 members of the Riigikogu were in favour of passing the Resolution and 25 were against. There were two abstentions.

Three Bills passed the second reading

The Bill on Amendments to the Land Tax Act (437 SE), initiated by the Government, will increase local governments’ decision-making power in determining land tax. The amendment of the Act will not mean an increase in land tax to a greater extent than provided by the current Act. The tax relief for land under homes will remain in place, but its amount will be decided by municipal councils which will be given greater discretion for this.

At present, the fiscal autonomy of local governments is insufficient, leaving municipalities dependent on central government funding decisions. This forces municipalities to wait for state funding when making their budgets, which in turn hinders forward planning for local life. Increasing fiscal autonomy at local government level will allow municipalities to strike a better balance between the level of services and the imposition of taxes.

In 2025, the annual increase in land tax will be subject to a uniform national ceiling of up to 50 percent, and 20 euro in the case when the 50 percent increase in an amount of land tax is less than 20 euro. From 2026 onwards, local governments will be able to set their own limit for the annual increase in land tax, ranging from ten to one hundred percent. Land tax cannot exceed the amount of the land tax calculated on the basis of the taxable value of the land and the land tax rate.

According to the Bill, the nationwide area-based tax relief for land under homes will be abolished from 2026, but local governments will be able to decide on the size of the amount-based tax relief for land under homes. The relief may be up to a thousand euro and land tax will have to be paid for the part exceeding the tax relief. A higher land tax can be paid in two instalments: by 31 March and 1 October. The Bill will increase the amount of the first payment from 64 euro to 100 euro.

Pursuant to the Bill, from 2025 the maximum tax rate on residential land and land parcels located within yards on profit yielding land will be increased from 0.5 per cent to one per cent of the taxable value of the land. The maximum rate of land tax on “other land”, such as commercial land, production land and transport land, will also be increased from one per cent to two per cent of the taxable value of the land.

In addition, the Bill will make a specification that land in state ownership with intended purpose of public construction works land will be exempt from tax only if the land is used by a state agency or local government agency.

Land tax is currently the only property tax in Estonia that has remained at the same level since 2012.

During the debate, Andrei Korobeinik and Anastassia Kovalenko-Kõlvart from the Estonian Centre Party Group, Arvo Aller from the Estonian Conservative People’s Party Group, Priit Sibul, Aivar Kokk, Mart Maastik, Andres Metsoja and Helir-Valdor Seeder from Isamaa Parliamentary Group and Madis Kallas and Anti Allas from the Social Democratic Party Group took the floor.

The Estonian Centre Party Group, the Estonian Conservative People’s Party Group and Isamaa Parliamentary Group moved to suspend the second reading of the Bill. 12 members of the Riigikogu voted in favour of the motion and 53 voted against. Thus, the motion was not supported, and the second reading of the Bill was concluded.

The Bill on Amendments to the Information Society Services Act and the Penal Code (224 SE), initiated by the Government, will bring Estonian law into conformity with the EU Regulation on addressing the dissemination of terrorist content online.

The main aim of the Regulation is to improve cooperation with hosting service providers in the EU in order to enhance the removal of terrorist content online. The Regulation concerns social media, as well as video, image and audio-sharing services in the case of which, at the request of users, the hosting service provider publishes web content which is publicly available and which is not subject to access restrictions, for example, password or encryption.

According to the Bill, hosting service providers will be required to adopt the necessary measures to prevent the spread of terrorist content online and in the event of the existence of such content they will be required to remove or disable access to it. The Bill will also regulate the division of tasks in order that it would be possible for competent authorities to implement measures arising from the Regulation and to exercise supervision over compliance with the obligations of hosting service providers.

In addition, the Bill will amend the provision on incitement to acts of terrorism in the Penal Code so that, in the future, it will be possible to also hold liable persons who incite to the commission of acts of terrorism when they issue incitements in a manner hidden from the public, for example, in moderated forums or groups.

The aim of the Bill on Amendments to the Foreign Service Act and Amendments to Other Associated Acts (353 SE), initiated by the Government, is to harmonise foreign service with the principles of public service and to make the current regulation clearer and simpler. Among other things, the Bill will update the foreign service salary system.

The Bill will reduce the burden upon the assignment of specialised diplomats and non-staff administrative officials to foreign missions as the decision-making competence relating to their assignment will be left to the sending ministry. In the recruitment to foreign service, a derogation will be made that will enable former diplomats to be recruited for a specified period without a public competition. The payment of the allowance for spouse and registered partner will also be continued to the extent of 50 percent in the case when the accompanying spouse works. An official who goes on a long-term assignment abroad alone with a child of under 13 years of age, a disabled child, or an adult child with no capacity for work will also have the possibility to take a support person with them to the long-term assignment abroad.

In the course of the second reading, an amendment was made to the Bill which provides that the provision delegating authority regulating the issues relating to the residence of the head of foreign mission will be transferred from the Foreign Relations Act to the Foreign Service Act. An amendment was also made to the Bill that concerns the social tax paid for the spouse or registered partner accompanying the official on a long-term assignment. Under the amendment, the employer will not have to pay it. The aim of the amendment is to encourage employers to allow their employees to take unpaid leave and to allow employees to return to their current job.

Two Bills passed the first reading

The Public Health Bill (433 SE), initiated by the Government, will establish a new consolidated text of the Public Health Act in order to update  the sector and to replace the Public Health Act that has been in force since 1995. The Bill will establish the responsibilities of all parties – the state, municipalities, and organisations – and will update requirements and restrictions to protect human health. More attention will be paid to prevention and children.

The Bill will set out environmental and catering requirements for nurseries, schools as well as social welfare institutions. For example, the role of head of school in creating an environment conducive to healthy eating will be increased. The Bill plans to ban the provision of tanning and tattooing services to minors. There are also plans to lay down requirements for electromagnetic fields, cosmetic products, beauty services, and swimming pools.

The new regulation will set restrictions on the use of products and services that pose a direct health risk. Restrictions will be imposed on the use of toxic plants, animals, and plant and animal products and dangerous chemicals in order to protect or improve health.

The Bill will amend the Advertising Act and the Consumer Protection Act in order to extend the supervision competence of the Health Board and to give the Board the right and obligation to exercise supervision over the legitimacy of the commercial practices relating to products and services, including advertising, in order to protect human health.

The Bill will also update the maximum fine and penalty payment rates in the Public Health Act and some special Acts in order that they would be sufficiently effective.

Another important amendment concerns an amendment to the Act on Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances and Precursors thereof which will allow new psychoactive substances potentially dangerous to the health of the population to be removed from the market more quickly in the future.

During the debate, Irja Lutsar from Estonia 200 Parliamentary Group took the floor.

Under the Bill on Amendments to the Republic of Estonia Education Act and Amendments to Other Associated Acts (establishment of an obligation to study) (447 SE), initiated by the Government, young people will also have to continue their studies after completing basic school. The Bill will replace compulsory school attendance with an obligation to study which will last until the age of 18 or until the completion of vocational or secondary education.

The Bill will specify the role of the state and local government as well as parents in fulfilling the obligation to study. For example, the state will have to ensure places in preparatory studies for young people who are not ready to continue their studies in secondary or vocational education studies because of either gaps in their language skills or other learning gaps. Local governments will have to identify young people who are not fulfilling their obligation to study, to investigate the reasons therefor and to find appropriate solutions. If the support applied by the school is not sufficient, the school will have to contact the local government. It is the responsibility of the parent to ensure that the child fulfils their obligation to study and to participate in the planning of the child’s study path after basic school.

The Bill will make changes to the vocational education system in particular to increase the flexibility of studies. For example, the share of general education studies and the possibility to make choices during studies will increase in secondary vocational education studies. Specialities will become broader as sector-based curricula will be created, with sub-skill modules within them. For example, it will be possible to choose the speciality of restaurant food preparation and the sub-skill of pastry chef within it. There are also plans to develop 18 new post-basic school curricula for young people entering vocational education.

The Bill will establish a clearer basis for how studies outside the classroom, for example in art, music and sport schools, can be integrated into general education studies. This means that individual vocational or higher education modules can also be integrated in studies. At the discretion of the owner of school, in the future, vocational schools will be able to provide upper secondary, vocational as well as evening school education. In addition, completion of the curricula of applied secondary schools will become more flexible, as it will also be possible to acquire a profession without secondary education.

The Bill will limit free re-entry for adults in vocational training in a similar way to higher education. For example, a person can no longer study free of charge if they have already been accepted for a place in free vocational training or higher education, or if they have completed free vocational training in the previous five years.

According to the Bill, the amendments relating to the obligation to study will apply to young people graduating from basic school in 2026.

The deliberation of six Bills was deferred

The first reading of the Bill on Amendments to § 27 of the Preschool Child Care Institutions Act (319 SE),  initiated by the Estonian Conservative People’s Party Group, the Bill on Amendments to the Basic Schools and Upper Secondary Schools Act and the Vocational Educational Institutions Act (404 SE), initiated by the Estonian Centre Party Group, the Bill on Amendments to the Family Benefits Act (329 SE),  initiated by the Estonian Conservative People’s Party Group, the Bill on Amendments to the Family Benefits Act (388 SE), initiated by the Estonian Centre Party Group, the Bill on Amendments to § 2 of the Public Holidays and Days of National Importance Act (402 SE), initiated by the Estonian Centre Party Group, and the Bill on Amendments to the Riigikogu Election Act (obtaining a compensation mandate according to the number of votes cast for a candidate) (412 SE), initiated by the Estonian Centre Party Group, was cancelled due to the absence of the presenter.

The sitting ended on Thursday at 00.01 a.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
Merilin Kruuse
+372 631 6592, +372 510 6179
[email protected]
Questions: [email protected]

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