Estonia's Position in the EU Has Become More Important, Says PM ({{commentsTotal}})

Estonian Prime Minister Taavi Rõivas said Estonia's influence in the EU has grown as has the nation's responsibility in shaping the union's future.

“Mentally, Estonians feel themselves to be wholly European, but our goals is to unite Europe also physically – construct energy, transport and communications links, set up a digital internal market,” Rõivas said, speaking on ETV's “Terevision” morning program on Thursday.

He said Estonia's position has grown in the EU, and the nation is trustworthy and heard by bigger member states.

“In 2003 Estonia's GDP in purchasing power standards (PPS) was 55 percent of EU average, but that figure grew to 71 percent by 2012,” Rõivas said.

Speaking about the union's future, Rõivas said the economic side should be prioritized, as the EU has the world's largest and wealthiest internal market. He said the union should work to eliminate any obstructions to doing business in the EU.

The digital internal market should also receive focus, Rõivas said, adding that for Estonians it is hard to understand why some nations, who have had longer to evolve, still do not have mobile ID or digital documents. He said free-trade agreements should also be in place with the US and Asia.