Tag Archives: Krišjānis Karins

Latvian PM shares vision of Future of Europe

The EU needs to strengthen the its core principles, Latvian Prime Ministers Krišjānis Kariņš said in the debate on the Future of Europe, on April 17 at European Parliament plenary session in Strasbourg.

Kariņš suggested four main fields of EU action: completing the Single Market, controlling external borders, undertaking a smart transition towards clean energy and boosting security. “Don’t fight the populists, address the causes of people’s malcontent,Prime Minister said. With people worrying about their jobs, the EU needs to sharpen its main tool for job creation – the Single Market. Europe needs to foster “National Champions” by opening up the Single Market, not embarking on a Chinese way of protectionism. “We need to continue to tear down the barriers to the Single Market. This is what will create more jobs and more wealth in Europe,” he said, singling out digital industry and services as the two main fields of action.

To avoid re-erecting internal borders and allow for an unhindered Single Market, the EU needs to shore up its external borders, control migration and make sure people arriving in the EU accept European values. “It is extremely important to maintain our national identities. Arrivals need to adapt themselves,” Mr Kariņš said, suggesting that Frontex, the European Border and Coast Guard Agency need to be beefed up further.

“If we truly want to increase the share of renewable energy in our system, we need to open up markets and deregulate prices. Consumer choice is what can best drive energy transition,” the Latvian PM suggested. “By opening electricity markets to competition and market prices, we can greatly increase the uptake in renewable energy sources and increase energy efficiency.”

My country spends 2% of its GDP on the military. I believe we all should. But we also need to work on strengthening our information defence”, PM Kariņš said, adding that new legislation could help to hold social media platforms to account for allowing disinformation to spread .

The Prime minister had discussion with MEPs, many of whom knew him as a colleague in the European Parliament.  

However Prime minister has been also confronted with harsh criticism for disparity between his speech and realities.  Lativian MEP Andrejs MAMIKINS raised a range of problems, including double citizenship of Mr.Kariņš, who kept his American passport while being head of Latvian government. MEP Mamikins pointed to the chronic situation of conflict of interests.

Today was the prime Minister of Mr. Kariņas to participate in the ES future debate. The Prime minister spoke of the diversity in Europe and the need to fight dirty money. In return, I offer the prime_minister to look in the mirror”, MEP MAMIKINS said.

MEPs attack terrorist financing

paris-attack-bataclan

MEPs have declined the EU Commission blacklist of countries deemed to be at risk of money laundering and terrorist financing, pointing that it is not coherent with the scale of the problme, and should be expanded to include territories that facilitate tax crimes. The document was retured to the EC after this week EP pleanry vote.

“The strength of the vote reflects the strength of feeling in Parliament about the inadequacy of this current list. We now hope that the Commission will be more ambitious in its revisions, so as to create a blacklist which is fit-for-purpose” – commented  Judith Sargentini (Greens/EFA, NL) repsonsible for the document, pointing at the vote results: 393 votes to 67 votes, with 210 abstentions.

 “A country should be placed on the ‘blacklist’ only when there is clear evidence of a systematic threat of money laundering and terrorist financing. The Commission needs to have a straightforward and transparent algorithm that can withstand public scrutiny.” -said  Krišjānis Karins (EPP, LV) – co-rapporteur.

The Commission lists eleven countries, including  Afghanistan, Iraq, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Syria, which it judges to be deficient in countering money laundering and terrorist financing. People and legal entities from blacklisted countries face tougher than usual checks when doing business in the EU.

Following the vote, an existing inventory of third countries thought to fall short in the area of anti-money laundering and terrorism finance will remain in force while the Commission considers any revisions.