Estonia not in favor of adoption of EU copyright directive

  • 2019-04-15
  • BNS/TBT Staff

TALLINN – Estonia is set to abstain in a vote to be taken on the European Union's Copyright Directive at the EU Agriculture and Fisheries Council on Monday.

The decision requires a qualified majority vote by member states in the council, and only votes in favor will count, spokespeople for the Estonian Justice Ministry said.

The minister of justice, Urmas Reinsalu, said that following the assessment the necessary balance has not been achieved in the Copyright Directive keeping in mind the future of the freedom of the internet. 

"Freedom is a very important value, and for that reason Estonia will not say yes to this thing today and will remain neutral in the legal sense," Reinsalu said according to spokespeople.

Last week, the permanent representative of Estonia at the instructions of the minister of justice presented a declaration in the EU council of permanent representatives, in which it was stressed that in the Copyright Directive sufficient balance between copyright holders, people and businesses has not been achieved. That may prevent innovation and have a negative impact on the competitiveness of the EU digital single market. 

Besides, the directive may not necessarily meet the requirements of legal clarity and its implementation may bring with itself problems with legal certainty.

In addition, parliamentary elections took place in Estonia only recently and our government and the Riigikogu have not been able to present their opinion on the final compromise text. Also the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Poland, Italy and Finland made their joint declaration. 

The aim of the introduction of the EU Copyright Directive is to ensure a fair remuneration for creators of content on the internet, to protect everybody's creative freedom on the internet and ensure better availability of creative content across the EU.