MEPs fear EU aid to Baltic countries will decline24.10.2012, 09:42
Estonian member of Europarliament Ivari Padar and his Latvian colleague Krisjanis Karins fear that the EU aid allocated to the Baltic countries will decline, writes Postimees.
Padar said that the situation was tense. “We will have to defend our positions no matter what. The Estonian position on connections and railway links to Europe may not be a priority for most of Europe and they could say that projects that are not so-called common projects must not be funded,” said Padar.
Padar added that Latvia is facing bigger problems than Estonia because Estonia could theoretically lose EUR 300 million in EU aid, but Latvia up to a billion euros.
Latvian MEP Kristjanis Karins said that there are big concerns over the future of the EU Cohesion Fund aid to be allocated to Estonia.
“This is a very complicated issue for countries like Estonia and Latvia because they receive more aid from the EU than they spend,” he said.
Krisjanis added that Estonia and Latvia need EU aid to bring their economies to the level with the rest of Europe. “But large net payers are now willing to tell voters that they will be paying less into the EU budget,” he said.
“We and our Estonian colleagues are working hard to make sure that we get our share no matter how big the blanket,” said Karins, adding that the outcome of the campaign was most uncertain.