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Future Lithuanian MEPs want to work on social issues, science and Ukraine

Vilija Blinkeviciute

By Angele Kedatiene

A few days ahead of the European Parliament elections (26 of May), it would be interesting to know what the most likely members of the European Parliament care about?

Most of them would like their priority to be towards social needs of the society.

Viktor Uspaskich of Labour party (ALDE) agrees with French President Macron on the need of a minimal wage in the European Union. He thinks that inequality, also among member states, is the major EU problem. According to him, ALDE while joining forces with Macron’s movement, would seek that minimal wage and minimal pension across EU to be the same, around €700 EUR. Those member states which can pay more are most welcome to do so.

The other problem he would fight for is the equal taxation for enterprises of all sizes, without exemptions to multinationals. Uspaskich would be for common foreign and security policy, for common juridical policy. He would aim at federal Europe with the deeper integration.

Vilija Blinkeviciute of Lithuanian social democratic party (S&D) thinks that the social safety and justice are top priorities, it’s something European people need in the first place. She, as a social democrat, commits to always be on the side of the ordinary working people. According to her European people would definitely tell that not everything is good in our European house. We still cannot overcome poverty, exclusion, inequality, gender questions, migration issues.

Radvile Morkunaite-Mikuleniene and Kestutis Masiulis, both from the Homeland Union (EPP) also agree on the need to align social conditions across the European Union, in particular the pensions. They agree it will not happen overnight, most likely not within the term of the new EP, nevertheless they think that common social policy of EU would make sense. People in Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Poland, Bulgaria, Croatia, work equally hard as in Germany or UK, but their living standards are yet much lover. Furthermore, better care for the disabled persons, while ensuring theirs full rights, would also be their priority.

According to Radvile Morkunaite-Mikuleniene it’s important for the EU to define its priorities, as today they seem chaotic. If we want to be competitive in science and technologies, to compete with the US and China, we have to define polices on how to achieve this, to invest in scientific research, and it’s not about a few conferences and seminars, it’s about continuous investments to build up the global level competences, she says.

Former Prime Minister Andrius Kubilius and former Defence minister Rasa Jukneviciene, both of Homeland Union (EPP) would fight for Ukraine. According to them, the perspective to Ukraine to become one day member of NATO and of the European Union would increase the chances to stop the war in Eastern part of the county and to calm down the situation in order to advance with domestic reforms.

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