Ministry to withdraw and redraft Electronic Communications Act amendments

Andres Sutt
Andres Sutt Source: Priit Mürk/ERR

Amendments to three laws, including the Electronic Communications Act, will be withdrawn from the Riigikogu and redrafted after repeated delays to their final reading. The amendments ban the use of technology from undemocratic countries.

Due to the delays, the entry into force deadlines have expired and need to be rewritten.

Minister of Enterprise and Information Technology Andres Sutt (Reform) proposed the withdrawal of the bill on amendments to the Electronic Communications Act (ESS), the Building Code and the State Fees Act.

Sutt said technical changes will be made and then the bill will be resubmitted.

"It is unfortunate that various lobbyists and political parties have used tactics to prolong the issue related to the security of the Estonian state and Estonians' access to the high-speed Internet," the minister added.

The new amendments will, among other things, ban the use of technology from undemocratic countries in Estonia's security infrastructure. The amendments are sometimes referred to as the "Huawei law" as they will ban the use of technology from the country.

Sutt said the communications market is developing rapidly and the draft is needed to harmonize requirements for different communications services and to encourage the construction of new communications networks.

"The draft ESS is an essential prerequisite for ensuring the development of technology in Estonia, so that we can finally move forward with 5G frequency competitions and offer the Estonian people a secure and fast connection and protect their rights when using various communication services," said Sutt.

Earlier this week, the Riigikogu was unable to agree to its working agenda after the opposition parties raised issues with the draft. They said it had been changed substantially between the second and third reading which is a procedural violation.

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Editor: Helen Wright

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