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The President of the Republic met Minister Jaan Õunapuu

President Arnold Rüütel this afternoon at Kadriorg discussed with Minister Jaan Õunapuu needs and possibilities to change the administrative system of Estonia.

The Head of State and Minister were of one accord that all reform plans should serve the interests of Estonia's well-balanced and sustainable development. Even though a clearly articulated political will concerning the future of administrative system was still lacking in Estonia, according to Jaan Õunapuu, a ministry-based governance tended to prevail, and this in spite of the fact that each region had to be furthered as a whole.

Both the President and the Minister opined that, first of all, regional governance should be strengthened, using for this purpose, if need be, elements of our two-tired local government system. "However, the ministry-based governance leads to an increase in centralization and makes know-how to concentrate in the capital city. It is crucial to guarantee that the whole of Estonia developed evenly and democratic governance functioned not only at the level of central authorities but also at the level of local authorities, counties and regions," the President noted.

Office of the President
Kadriorg, May 19, 2003

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