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The Riigikogu passed seven Acts:

The Riigikogu passed with 57 votes in favour the Language Act Amendment Act (1077 SE and 902 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic and the Isamaaliit and Res Publica Faction. The Act stipulates the competence of the Language Inspectorate, changes the procedure for establishing the language skills requirements, specifies the procedure for the assessment of the Estonian language skills, provides for the rights of an institution organising the language proficiency examinations in repealing and proceeding category certificates of the skills of the Estonian language pertaining to work or certificates of proficiency in the Estonian language, specifies the use of minority language in local government units and amends § 2 of the Language Act, pursuant to which the state promotes, in addition to the Estonian language, also the use and development of the sign language and the signed Estonian language. Among other things, the Act allows public information – labels, pointers, advertisements, announcements, advertising etc. – to include a regional form of the Estonian language or a translation into a foreign language on the condition that the Estonian is in the first place and clearly visible.The Riigikogu passed with 56 votes in favour the Act on Amendments to the Veterinary Supervision over Trade in Animals and Animal Products and the Import and Export Thereof Act (1072 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The Act brings the text of the Act in conformity with the EU legal acts and simplifies the implementation of the Act through the amendment of the wording of some provisions. The Act creates the possibility to import to Estonia animals and animal products on which the European Commission has not established common import requirements and whose supply is marginal (circus animals, invertebrates used in medicine and plant protection etc.).

The Riigikogu passed with 56 votes in favour (1 abstention) the Waste Act Amendment Act (1044 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. It also eliminates several inaccuracies and loopholes, emerged during the implementation of the Waste Act. Large part of the Act consists of terminological details and explanatory supplements.

The Riigikogu passed with 56 votes in favour the Value Added Tax Act Amendment Act (1066 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The Act transposes several legislative provisions included in the Directives of the Council of the European Union. The provision of the Value Added Tax Act was repealed pursuant to which the five-percent value added tax rate was applied to certain chemical pest control repellents. A new clause was added to § 16 on tax exempt supply which stipulates tax exemption on the services of dental technicians and dentures removed from use by dentists and dental technicians. By allowing the value added tax to be calculated on value added tax returns on goods imported from non-contracting parties, the fulfilment of tax obligations for undertakings became much easier, and tax administrators’ work load in checking the claims for refund of value added taxes also became lighter.

The Riigikogu passed with 55 votes in favour (2 against) the Providing International Protection to the Aliens Act Amendment Act (1074 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. Pursuant to the Act, the regulation concerning private and delicate personal data was enforced on the legislative level. The obligation to submit private and delicate personal data in applying the residence permit and in applying the extension of residence permits by an asylum seeker, refugee, applicant for supplementary legal protection and temporary protection, was specified, regarding the applicant’s race, nationality, religion, political opinions and affiliation to social groups, as well as the data about the applier’s spouse or partner.

The Riigikogu passed with 54 votes in favour (3 abstentions) the Ambient Air Protection Act and Environmental Supervision Act Amendment Act (985 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The Act makes amendments to the state-level requirements on the protection of ambient air. All the restrictions established pursuant to the Act, are meant to ensure the use of more environmentally friendly products (paints, varnishes, vehicle refinishing materials, products containing ozone depleting substances and liquid fuels). If the consumption of these products increase, it enables to spare the population from the growing ambient air pollution.

The Riigikogu passed with 59 votes in favour the Public Libraries Act Amendment Act (1070 SE), initiated by the Government of the Republic. The Act specifies the tasks of the county and central libraries, the procedure for the recruitment of a director of the public library and makes amendments to the provisions concerning the education requirements, and specifies the procedure for presenting reporting, the provisions related to the administration of collections and responsibility of readers. The Act provides for more decision-making possibilities in matters concerning library policies on the local level.

The Riigikogu Press Service