Committee preparing EU presidency confirms list of representatives
The government committee preparing Estonia’s presidency of the Council of the European Union confirmed a list of 75 officials who will represent the presidency dealing with the domestic as well as foreign media. They face enough additional work to make a legal change necessary.
Piret Lilleväli, who is in charge of the organizing team, told ERR that naturally, the most exposed positions here would be those of the prime minister and other government members.
To make the background of negotiations and different issues accessible to the media, officials familiar with the areas in question would participate in press briefings in Tallinn and Brussels, as well as work on materials to introduce and explain various subjects, Lilleväli said.
The Government Office has asked the ministries to name those officials that could fill such roles in Tallinn.
The final decision on the different representatives will be made in spring, when the officials have passed the necessary training and are ready to take up their tasks.
The presidency affects some 1,000 officials across ministries and the Estonian representation in Brussels. Their workload will increase significantly during the period of the presidency.
The experience of previous presidencies showed that representatives and officials at the presiding country’s permanent representation in Brussels typically face 14-hour work days, and have to work six days a week instead of five, as each week is busy enough to force officials to prepare for it over the weekend, Lilleväli explained.
For this reason, the government was planning to grant the affected officials additional paid holidays, which made changing the according legal act necessary as well.