Riho Terras (Isamaa), who will be starting work next Monday as Estonia's seventh member of the European Parliament, said on Friday that he is interested in being involved in economic issues, adding that he intends to continue serving working for Milrem Robotics as chairman of the supervisory board.
"I have indicated my desire to work on the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy (ITRE) and the Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development (AGRI)," Terras told ERR on Friday. "And should that end up being the case, then those are the issues that I'd like to focus on."
He also promised to be involved in topics that fall outside of the scope of these commissions but which are vital to Estonia. "It is important to me to be involved in the European Parliament in issues that are decisive for life in Estonia, and I believe that I can best stand for Estonia's interests in these two committees," he added.
Terras, the former commander of the Estonian Defense Forces (EDF), said that he didn't even consider the Committee on Foreign Affairs (AFET), as already serving on the committee are "three good former Estonian foreign ministers." Currently serving in AFET are former foreign ministers Urmas Paet (Reform) and Sven Mikser (SDE); the third Estonian serving on the committee is Jaak Madison (EKRE), who has not previously served as minister of foreign affairs. Former foreign minister Marina Kaljurand (SDE) does not belong to AFET.
Asked whether he had already terminated his employment relationship with Milrem Robotics, where he worked as director of the Defense Division, Terras said that Friday was his last day of work as division director, but that the owners of the company want him to stay on as chairman of the company's supervisory board. "Which I also intend to do," he added.
The MEP-to-be said that he had asked jurists and law firms to examine whether such a position would be permitted for an MEP, and he was told that so long as it is public information and everyone is aware of it, then it isn't against the rules.
Terras will officially become Estonia's seventh elected MEP as of February 1 in connection with the United Kingdom's withdrawal from the EU on January 31.
The National Electoral Committee officially registered Terras as MEP on Thursday, and the European Parliament confirmed on Friday that it had received Terras' documents. The new MEPs' joining of the European Parliament as of February 1 will be officially announced at a plenary scheduled for February 10.
In the 2019 European Parliament elections, Riho Terras earned 21,477 votes. He joined Isamaa on March 26, 2019.
Editor: Aili Vahtla