A plenary of the Riigikogu heard a report by Centre Party MP Kadri Simson, candidate for European Commissioner, on Wednesday, in which she affirmed that she wants to take advantage of her ministerial experience in Europe.
"My work experience thus far as MP and minister of economic affairs and infrastructure offers a solid basis for representing Estonia in a dignified manner in Europe as well," Simson said.
She highlighted that her experience thus far provide a solid basis for dealing with energy, economy or transport, for example, but added that the final decision regarding fields of responsibility and portfolios will remain with the future president of the European Commission, who must consider each candidate for Commissioner. All fields of responsibility in the European Commission are important and dignified, she noted.
The Centre MP stressed that the appointment of a Commissioner is the right of every country, and provides the opportunity to have a say in the European Commission's decisions and receive crucial information on what is happening in the decision-making of the EU.
"I am convinced that a strong and solidary EU is in the interests of every one of us," Simson said. "The cornerstones of the joint values and cooperation of the EU are namely trust and solidarity, to the promotion of which Estonia is prepared to contribute. A unified and open EU is in our interests."
According to Simson, the new European Commission to assume office must pay attention to European security and cannot forget close relations with the U.K., including in the security field. Contributions must also be made to relations between the EU and its allies, she added. While it is yet unclear what will become of the U.K., what is clear is that Estonia cannot do without strong, positive ties with the U.K. in the future either.
The candidate for Commissioner said that she believes that a stronger European internal market is in everyone's interests, and will create new opportunities for European and Estonian companies alike to compete on equal footing worldwide.
"As we in Estonia have started cutting all kinds of bureaucratic measures that are restricting the activity of entrepreneurs, these kinds of useless obstacles have to be done away with on the European internal market as well," Simson said. "We need fewer barriers and more cooperation."
Estonia must develop the digital internal market, she continued, as this will help improve social welfare.
"We must be at the forefront of technological innovation, as this is our competitive advantage," she noted. "As a strong digital state, Estonia can make its contribution to pan-European development."
Simson noted that she believes in the EU and its common market as well as the free movement of people, and considers every person important. She promised to stand for new transport solutions and projects, and considers innovation important, from transport to energy.
According to the candidate, the European Commission is faced with many challenges, one of the most important of which is the upcoming new financing period. She also noted that several other critical issues likewise remain on the table, including security, border issues, the EU economy, competition with major world powers, and cooperation.
Editor: Aili Vahtla