On Wednesday, the government's committee on economic development familiarized itself with the proposals of an expert forum concerning ways to help preserve jobs and facilitate changes in the economy.
The government is to discuss the proposals on September 3.
Prime Minister Jüri Ratas (Center) wrote in a press release: "Relevant ministries will now go on working with the input received from the business operators and economic experts, and more precise activities with regard to the implementation of the recommendations of the experts will be presented to the cabinet meeting on September 3. Already in the near future we are about to start negotiations on the state budget, in the course of which we will take the proposals received from the business operators and economic experts into account."
The expert forum found that the preservation of jobs and creation of new jobs, and accelerating structural changes in the economy must be the strategic objectives of the state in exiting the crisis caused by the pandemic. Strengthening of the economy must take place foremost through innovation, digitization and environmental sustainability.
The expert forum emphasized that short-term measures must support long-term strategic objectives.
The experts gave more specific recommendations when it comes to speeding up investments by the state, in order to preserve jobs, as well as supporting the coping of people on the labor market and facilitating competitiveness of businesses and innovation.
They also listed a stable business environment supportive of managing the impact from the crisis and going on with measures to increase the efficiency of the public sector as important.
The experts recommended not to respond to the reduction in fiscal intake resulting from the crisis with cuts, but to borrow money to bridge the gap, which constitutes substantial support by the state for the economy. After that, one would move back towards the state budget rules agreed in the European Union.
It is essential, according to the forum of experts, to ensure the free movement of individuals and goods, preserve critical infrastructure the upkeep of which may turn out too expensive for the owners during a crisis, and take the needs of regional development into account when developing economic measures.
The government's committee on economic development also looked at the proposals of a work group on economic crisis measures convened by Minister of Foreign Trade and IT Raul Siem (EKRE) for the elimination of the shortfalls revealed during the implementation of the first crisis package.
As the second item on the meeting's agenda, the committee familiarized itself with a vision on the implementation of real-time economy presented by Minister of Economic Affairs and Infrastructure Taavi Aas (Center).
The aim of the vision is to set forth technical and regulatory possibilities by 2027 for business data to be digitalized and move automatically between different parties. That would allow to significantly reduce bureaucracy, preserve human resource, minimize time intensiveness, and save over 200 million euros in the business sector per year.
The economic development committee of the government is led by the prime minister. The committee meets to gain an overview of the economic situation, find solutions to issues that need to be coordinated between different ministries, involve experts and stakeholders, and engage in the development of the economic environment.
The committee is scheduled to meet again on August 24.
Editor: Kristjan Kallaste