Estonian Prime Minister Jüri Ratas: we must ensure the presence of allies in the Baltic States in the future as well

  • Press releases
  • 18/12/2017 11:53

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The prime ministers of the Baltic States
At a meeting between the Estonian, Latvian and Lithuanian prime ministers, Jüri Ratas emphasised how essential it is to move forward with the Rail Baltica project (photo: Raigo Pajula)

Today’s meeting of the three Baltic prime ministers began with a discussion on regional security. According to Prime Minister Ratas, all three countries believe that the Enhanced Forward Presence (eFP), which brought 20 allies to the Baltic States and Poland this year and thereby significantly strengthened the security of the region, was a success.

“The cooperation of the three Baltic countries had an important role in the making of this decision. This, however, does not mean that total security has been achieved. We must continue contributing to ensure NATO’s attention to our region and its presence in the Baltic States in the future as well,” said Ratas at the joint press conference that followed the meeting.

In addition to defence, the prime ministers also discussed cooperation in energy infrastructure projects and the development of transport connections. “I sincerely hope that by the summer of next year, we will have all the information necessary for moving forward with the synchronisation of Baltic and continental Europe’s electricity systems,” said the Prime Minister.

The creation of a regional Baltic-Finnish gas market is in progress. “A well-functioning and well-connected regional gas market also means efficient competition and increased energy security,” added Ratas.

According to Ratas, it is essential to move forward with the Rail Baltica project. “We also need to ensure the financing of the project during the next budgetary period of the European Union,” said Prime Minister Ratas.

At the end of the meeting, Prime Minister Ratas thanked his Latvian and Lithuanian colleagues for a great cooperation during the Estonian Presidency of the Council of the European Union. “The Estonian Presidency was a success, especially thanks to the great cooperation with our closest friends,” concluded Ratas.

The meeting will continue with a joint lunch where matters pertaining to the European Union will be discussed.