- The ministries continue to work on the transparency of Estonia's EU legislation position formation process
The ministries continue to work on the transparency of Estonia's EU legislation position formation process
The Estonian Chamber of Commerce and Industry wishes that the protection of Estonia’s positions during the negotiation of the EU legislative proposal becomes more transparent and inclusive. The legislation of the European Union has a constantly growing share in the legislation, and this also places on the Estonian state a greater responsibility than before to defend the interests of the Estonian state as well as possible during the negotiations of legislative proposals taking place at the EU level.
The Chamber of Commerce points out the bottlenecks of today's situation: interest groups are increasingly involved in shaping Estonia's positions, but after the positions are confirmed, as a general rule, there is no more communication between the state and interest groups. Therefore, there is no overview of the further process, and it is also difficult to assess, for example, how successfully our officials and politicians defend Estonia’s interests in Brussels.
It also remains unknown why our officials or politicians give up defending previously agreed positions or why Estonia's positions are not considered. Also, as a rule, there is no information about what topics the negotiations will focus on or what changes are planned to be made compared to the original version of the proposal, and what is Estonia's position regarding these changes.
The Chamber of Commerce turned to the Government Office, as the Government Office's task is, among other things, to coordinate the formation and defence of Estonia's positions in EU affairs. As a result of the appeal, the Secretariat of the European Union organized a discussion with the ministries on the practical issues of inclusion.
In the feedback sent to the Estonian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the ministries confirm that they participate in this process within the limits of their own administrative area and area of responsibility by submitting formulated statements to both the Government Office and the Government of the Republic. for approval. The general starting point is that the formation of Estonia's positions regarding the legal initiatives of the European Union is primarily guided by the regulations of the government of the republic, the rules of good legislative and normative planning, and good practice of participation. and instructions regarding the processing of European Union affairs.
The ministries consider transparency and the participation of the interest groups very important in shaping the Estonian state's views on EU legislation, but agree that there could be more transparency and communication with different parties. The common challenge of the ministries has been a lack of resources - people, time, data - while the volume of EU legislation and the intensity of regulation continue to grow. The drafts of EU legislation are increasingly horizontal and detailed, and to the extent that the presented drafts do not always include an impact assessment, this also makes it difficult to identify potential impacts on interest groups.
All ministries continue to work to improve, streamline and organize the participation system to be more transparent, and additional opportunities for better information and participation are sought to facilitate the process of forming Estonia's positions for interest groups. It is also intended to renew the guidelines for the handling of EU affairs under the leadership of Government Office, and the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications also plans to make proposals to increase the transparency of the process.