No. 8




Estonia in the European Union

18 December 2003


RiTo No. 8, 2003

  • Ene Ergma

    Member of the Riigikogu, Vice-Chairperson of the Pro Patria and Res Publica Union

Estonians have achieved renown in Europe as a fairly Euro-skeptical people. Even though the slogan “from one union to another” cannot be taken seriously, it is understandable that the emotions of a nation that has only been free for a dozen or so years cannot be dismissed with a wave of the hand.

The people must be confident that joining the EU is the smart and useful thing to do in terms of economic well-being as well as from the standpoint of culture, language and national identity. It is not possible to equate Brussels and Moscow. Yet the people must be vigilant that decisions in Brussels are not reached under pressure from alien superpowers, behind our back and against our will, but rather that we would be able to have a say in decisions, which often arise as result of hard-won compromises.

And hence the Riigikogu’s new duties: the Riigikogu as a body elected by the people must make sure that EU decisions are in conformance with the mores and interests of the Estonian people. And hence also the principles for the EU: the decision-making process must be transparent, ensure that national parliaments are kept informed in a timely manner, and allow them to intervene when EU bodies exceed the powers vested in them by member states.

Full article in Estonian