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Estonian minister wants EUR 300 monthly support paid to youth working in East-Viru County

BC, Tallinn, 10.10.2017.Print version
One of the largest ideas of the East-Viru County program discussed in the Cabinet last week involved paying a monthly stipend of 300 euros over the course of at least 10 years to vocational education and higher education graduates who start work in East-Viru County, regional newspaper Pohjarannik said, cites LETA/BNS.

Minister of Public Administration Jaak Aab, who presented the program at the Cabinet sitting told the newspaper that all young people who have a certificate of a vocational education institution or higher education institution and come to East-Viru County to work -- either in a state institution or private company -- would be paid a monthly stipend of 300 euros by the state. "This is the plan, this is my proposal. I sincerely hope that it will also be confirmed," Aab said.


He added that the details of paying the support will have to reviewed and agreed upon in the government. "But young people should receive such a support in at least ten years. This involves hundreds of young people - not only those who live here now, but also those who are coming from elsewhere to work here," he said, adding that the aim of this measure is for young people to stay in East-Viru County.


Aab said that East-Viru County is not the only region in Estonia where the outflow of young people is a big problem. "I am also concerned by Southeast Estonia. We must think about regional policy in those regions where the most people are leaving from," he said.


In addition to the support for young people, Aab also proposed paying investment support to businesses that create jobs in East-Viru County. He said that sum of the one-off subsidy to small or medium businesses should be between 100,000 and 400,000 euros. "It is no secret that we are diligently creating industrial parks and the state has invested money in them, but businesses should also come to the parks now," the minister said. He said that this kind of subsidy is required to alleviate the problems of East-Viru businesses in receiving loans from banks.


Aab said that the government is deliberating giving a state loan guarantee to business investments made in other regions. "We would also give out investment support in East-Viru County -- to concrete projects, with application rounds -- to those who create new or expand existing businesses here, which result in the creation of new jobs. Whether they are in industrial parks or elsewhere," he said.


Ministers at the Cabinet meeting last week did not come to an agreement regarding the East-Viru County program due to disagreement. The government formed a work group to solve the conflicts that had arisen in relation to the program. Members of the work group include of Minister of Public Administration Jaak Aab, Minister of Justice Urmas Reinsalu and Minister of Health and Labor Jevgeni Ossinovski.


The government has planned 5 million euros from the state budget of next year for activities of the East-Viru County program. The sum should increase to 10 million euros from 2019.


The three-strong work group of ministers is also planning to develop a long-term and stable financing model for the East-Viru County program. There has been talk previously of directing the pollutions charges paid by oil shale businesses to the program, but the Ministry of the Environment has been against that idea. Aab said that they are also deliberating the intended use of the resource fees of oil shale paid to the state budget. He said that the work group is planning to take their proposals to the government in a month.

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