Tag Archives: Estonia

Enlargement 2004 and 2007

Enlargement 2004 and 2007

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Enlargement 2004 and 2007

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These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Enlargement > Enlargement 2004 and 2007

Enlargement 2004 and 2007

The fifth enlargement is historic and unprecedented in the history of the European Union. The ten Central and Eastern European countries, together with Cyprus and Malta, joined the EU in two successive waves in 2004 and 2007. In this context, the EU paved the way for the current enlargement process by establishing suitable instruments to be able to respond not only to the needs of the candidate countries, but also to the specific needs of the EU to receive them.

  • Bulgaria – adoption of the community acquis
  • Romania – adoption of the community acquis
  • Cyprus – adoption of the community acquis
  • Estonia – adoption of the community acquis
  • Hungary – adoption of the community acquis
  • Latvia – adoption of the community acquis
  • Lithuania – adoption of the community acquis
  • Malta – adoption of the community acquis
  • Poland – adoption of the community acquis
  • Czech republic – adoption of the community acquis
  • Slovakia – adoption of the community acquis
  • Slovenia – adoption of the community acquis
  • Partnership for the accession of Cyprus
  • Partnership for the accession of Estonia
  • Partnership for the accession of Hungary
  • Partnership for the accession of Latvia
  • Partnership for the accession of Lithuania
  • Partnership for the accession of Malta
  • Partnership for the accession of Poland
  • Partnership for the accession of the Czech Republic
  • Partnership for the accession of Slovakia
  • Partnership for the accession of Slovenia

HISTORY OF EASTERN ENLARGEMENT

General Provisions

  • The 2004 enlargement: the challenge of a 25-member EU
  • Enlargement, two years after – an economic success
  • The communication strategy on enlargement
  • Participation of the Central and Eastern European candidate countries in Community programmes
  • The challenge of enlargement
  • Agenda 2000: for a stronger and wider Union

Sectoral approach

  • Enlargement of the euro area after 1 May 2004
  • Joint assessments of employment policies in the candidate countries
  • Community response to the flooding in central Europe
  • Strengthening administrative and judicial capacity
  • Nuclear safety in the Newly Independent States and Central and Eastern Europe
  • Accession strategies for the environment
  • Community action for regions bordering the candidate countries

PRE-ACCESSION INSTRUMENTS 2000-2006

  • Phare Programme
  • Pre-accession agricultural instrument (SAPARD)
  • Instrument for structural policy for pre-accession
  • Cross-border cooperation programme
  • Coordination instrument

ENLARGEMENT 2007

  • Roadmaps for Bulgaria and Romania

Bulgaria

  • Partnership for the accession of Bulgaria

Romania

  • The Accession Partnership with Romania

ENLARGEMENT 2004

Cyprus

  • Partnership for the accession of Cyprus

Estonia

  • Partnership for the accession of Estonia

Hungary

  • Partnership for the accession of Hungary

Latvia

  • Partnership for the accession of Latvia

Lithuania

  • Partnership for the accession of Lithuania

Malta

  • Partnership for the accession of Malta

Poland

  • Partnership for the accession of Poland

Czech Republic

  • Partnership for the accession of the Czech Republic

Slovakia

  • Partnership for the accession of Slovakia

Slovenia

  • Partnership for the accession of Slovenia

Accession by Estonia to the euro

Accession by Estonia to the euro

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Accession by Estonia to the euro

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Economic and monetary affairs > Institutional and economic framework of the euro

Accession by Estonia to the euro (2011)

Document or Iniciative

Council Decision 2010/416/EU of 13 July 2010 in accordance with Article 140(2) of the Treaty on the adoption by Estonia of the euro on 1 January 2011 [Official Journal L 196 of 28.7.2010].

Summary

In this Decision, the Council states that Estonia fulfils all the necessary conditions for the adoption of the euro:

  • Estonia fulfils the requirements established by the convergence criteria: price stability; the government budgetary position; participation in the exchange-rate mechanism of the European Monetary System; a satisfactory long-term interest rate;
  • Estonia’s national legislation is compatible with the introduction of the euro.

Consequently, Estonia will adopt the euro on 1 January 2011.

Price stability

Member States’ price performance must be sustainable. In order to fulfil this criterion, the annual inflation rate of the Member State must be below a reference value. This value is the average of the annual inflation rates of the three best performing Member States in terms of price stability. If the inflation rate of a candidate Member State does not exceed the reference value by more than 1.5 %, and if their performance in terms of price stability is considered to be sustainable, the criterion of price stability is fulfilled.

The Council notes that the average annual inflation rate in Estonia calculated in March 2010 (-0.7 %) is well below the reference value (0.3 %) and its performance in terms of price stability is considered to be sustainable.

Government budgetary position

Estonia does not have an excessive budget deficit. The government budgetary position of the country is therefore satisfactory and enables the euro to be introduced.

Participation in the exchange-rate mechanism of the European Monetary System

This mechanism establishes a central exchange rate between the euro and Member States’ national currencies, and allows for moderate fluctuations around the central rate. Each country applying to adopt the euro must have participated in this exchange rate mechanism for at least two years without having been subject to serious tensions as regards the rate of their currency.

In line with the requirements of the Treaties, the Estonian kroon joined this exchange rate mechanism in June 2004 and was not subject to serious tensions during the two-year application assessment period.

Long-term interest rates

Long-term interest rates are calculated on the basis of the interest rates for long-term bonds issued by Member States. However, the Council notes that the level of public debt is very low in Estonia and there is therefore no appropriate long-term interest rate available to analyse the sustainability of Estonia’s convergence.

The Council therefore relied on a qualitative analysis of different economic and financial indicators as well as Estonia’s fiscal policy track record and the flexibility of its economy in order to check compliance with the long-term interest rate criterion.

National legislation

In addition to having to fulfil convergence criteria, the national legislation of a Member State that is applying to join the euro mechanism must also be compatible with the introduction of the single currency.

In this case, the Council notes that Estonia’s internal legislation does not pose any obstacle to the introduction of the euro. It is compatible with the Statutes of the European Central Bank and the European System of Central Banks (ESCB). The ESCB is composed of the European Central Bank and the central banks of Member States. The main objective of the ESCB is to maintain price stability.

Estonia – adoption of the community acquis

Estonia – adoption of the community acquis

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Estonia – adoption of the community acquis

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These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Enlargement > Enlargement 2004 and 2007 > Estonia – adoption of the community acquis

Estonia – adoption of the community acquis

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Estonia

Estonia

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Estonia

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Competition > Competition: international dimension and enlargement

Estonia

1) References

Commission Opinion [COM(97) 2006 final – Not published in the Official Journal]
Commission Report [COM(98) 705 final – Not published in the Official Journal]
Commission Report [COM(1999) 504 final – Not published in the Official Journal]
Commission Report [COM(2000) 704 final – Not published in the Official Journal]
Commission Report [COM(2001) 700 final – SEC(2001) 1747 – Not published in the Official Journal]
Commission Report [COM(2002) 700 final – SEC(2002) 1403 – Not published in the Official Journal]
Commission Report [COM(2003) 675 final – SEC(2003) 1201 – Not published in the Official Journal]
Treaty of Accession to the European Union [Official Journal L 236 of 23.09.2003]

2) Summary

In its July 1997 Opinion, the European Commission considered that the adoption of the new draft Competition Act in Estonia would mark a significant step towards the harmonisation of legislation on restrictive agreements, and provided that certain amendments were introduced into the draft text, the degree of harmonisation concerning state aid would also be satisfactory. However, a major effort would be needed in the medium-term to meet the requirements for monitoring of state aid, in particular as regards transparency.

The November 1998 Report noted that despite the adoption of a new Competition Act further progress was needed in this field, especially with regard to state aid. State aid control had to be further developed. Efforts were needed to create full transparency in the granting of state aid in order to establish a comprehensive and updated state aid inventory. In addition, the powers of the State Aid Monitoring Authority needed to be strengthened.

The October 1999 Report stated that some progress had been made with the anti-trust legislation, but that the legislation in force did not cover all aspects of merger control. In the state aid field, Estonia still needed to make an effort to meet the short and medium-term priorities of the Accession Partnership.

The November 2000 Report stated that Estonia had made some progress in coming into line with the acquis on competition, in particular, with regard to state aid. Amendments to state aid provisions, providing for ex ante control and strengthening the role of the national authority, came into force in January.

The October 2001 Report stated that Estonia had made steady progress in the area. The new law on competition, which came into force in October 2001, introduced checks on mergers and further alignment with the acquis relating to restrictive agreements and state aid.

The October 2002 Report considered that Estonia had made further progress. However, efforts are still needed to satisfy demands concerning the monitoring of state aid.

The November 2003 Report notes that Estonia is essentially meeting the commitments and requirements arising from the accession negotiations in the competition area. However, it must ensure the proper application and enforcement of legislation, particularly as regards the new criminal procedure applied in anti-trust cases.

COMMUNITY

ACQUIS

European Community rules on competition stem from Article 3(g) of the EC Treaty, which states that the activities of the Community shall include “a system ensuring that competition in the internal market is not distorted”. The main areas of application are restrictive agreements and State aid.

The Europe Agreement with Estonia was signed on 12 June 1995 and will come into force once it has been ratified by all the Member States of the European Union. It provides for a competition regime to be applied in trade relations between the Community and Estonia based on the requirements set out in Articles 81, 82 and 87 of the EC Treaty (ex-Articles 85, 86 and 92) concerning agreements between undertakings, abuses of dominant position and State aid, and for implementing rules in these fields to be adopted within three years of the entry into force of the Agreement.

Furthermore, the Agreement requires Estonia to make its rules on competition compatible with those of the Community.

The White Paper refers to the progressive application of the above provisions and of those contained in the Merger Regulation (4064/89) and Articles 31 (ex-Article 37) and 86 (ex-Article 90) concerning monopolies and special rights of the EC Treaty.

EVALUATION

The new Competition Act came into force in October 2001. This law brought Estonia’s legislation on anti-trust largely into line with the acquis as regards merger control, vertical restraints and horizontal cooperation agreements. After the new criminal code was adopted in June 2001, Estonia modified the Competition Act in September 2002.

The national competition authority, called the Competition Office, has the necessary human and technical resources to handle a large number of cases. Nevertheless, significant financial resources will be required.

The Competition Act also contains provisions on State aid and makes alignment with the acquis possible at a later stage. The national State aid monitoring authority, called the Division for Competition and State Aid, is part of the Ministry of Finance and has wide powers to ensure that the rules are applied in this area. Estonia still has to finalise the application of state aid provisions in the three sensitive sectors, namely the steel, automobile and synthetic fibre industries.

Since the Commission’s Opinion of 1997, Estonia has made steady progress. Negotiations on this chapter have been provisionally closed (see the 2002 Report). Estonia has not requested any transitional arrangements in this area.

This summary is for information only and is not designed to interpret or replace the reference document.