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The Baltic Assembly (“BA”) is an international organisation which aims to promote co-operation between the parliaments of the Republics of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. It attempts to find a common position in relation to many international issues, including economic, political and cultural issues. The Baltic Assembly’s decisions do not bind the member governments but are only advisory.

Contents

Formation

The organisation was formed after a decision to establish it was made in Vilnius on 1 December 1990. It works under regulations approved on 8 November 1991 in Tallinn. On 13 June 1994 the three nations agreed to the structure and rules of the organisation.

The budget of the BA is funded by the three member governments.

The official languages of the Baltic Assembly are Estonian, Latvian and Lithuanian.

The headquarters and secretariat of the organisation is in Riga, Latvia. The Baltic Assembly has its own flags and symbols.

Sessions

The BA meets in session twice yearly, once in the spring and once in autumn. The venue of these sessions rotates through the three Baltic member nations.

Composition

The BA comprises sixty members. Each of the parliaments of the three States appoints twenty of its members to the Assembly. Each of the national parliaments appoints two of the members to be head and deputy head of the national delegation. The six head delegates and deputy head delegates form the BA’s Presidium. The Chairman of the Presidium is the head of the national delegation of the country hosting the next session of the BA. The heads of the other two national delegations are Vice Chairmen of the Presidium. The Presidium controls the BA between sessions. The Chairman acts as the co-ordinator of the work of the BA, is its representative with other bodies and liaises with the three members’ governments.

Committees of the Baltic Assembly

The following are the standing committees:

  • Budget and Audit,
  • Communications and Informatics,
  • Economic and Social Affairs,
  • Education, Science and Culture,
  • Environment Protection and Energy,
  • Legal and
  • Security and Foreign Affairs.

Each member of the BA participates in at least one committee.

Political Groupings

The 20 members of the BA from each country are chosen so that their political make-up reflects the proportions within their home parliament. The members may then form cross-national party groupings of at least five members from at least two nations.

As of 2006 the three political groupings are the Conservative-Right Party Group, the Centre Party Group and the Social Democratic Party Group.

Achievements

The BA claims the following as its achievements between 1991 and 2003 [1]:

  • Withdrawal of Russian troops from the member States,
  • Formation of the Baltic Council of Ministers as an institution of governmental co-operation,
  • Development of common Baltic economic, educational and information technology policies,
  • Harmonisation of legislation in conformity with requirements of the European Union,
  • Improvement of border-crossing procedures,
  • The establishment of the BA Prizes for Literature, the Arts and Science.

External links

Notes

  1. ^ BA web-page







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