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Saturday 23.03.2019 | Name days: Mirdza, Žanete, Žanna
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Parties pledge to boost efficiency of state administration

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUState administration needs to get rid of overlapping functions, introduce e-management as as soon as possible and consider cutting the number of ministries, according to five politic parties running in the 11th Saeima elections.

Several parties say they are ready to slash the number of ministries, while not all of them believe it would actually add to the efficiency of the state apparatus.

All for Latvia!-For Fatherland and Freedom/LNNK has a clear vision of which parties could be merged. The party proposes combining the Economy Ministry and the Environment and Regional Development Ministry to create a new Development Ministry, says Einars Cilinskis, member of the party, adding that abandonment of certain functions must be assessed very thoroughly.

Dzintars Zakis, Unity member, in turn believes giving away some functions is not a solution at all, as first and foremost it is necessary to try boosting efficiency of them.

A smaller number of ministries is by far the only way to economic and national success. We need to launch e-management as soon as possible and eliminate overlap of functions, he says.

Zatlers Reform Party is also ready to such reforms, however, Vjaceslavs Dombrovskis, its candidate for the Prime Minister post, points out it would not be sensible to reform such classic ministries as Foreign Affairs, Defence and Finance. Other ministries could be discussed, he says, adding that, for example, Estonia does without a transport ministry. Similarly, it should be assessed whether the Welfare Ministry and Health Care Ministry really need to exist as two separate entities, he adds.

Greens and Farmers Union member Dana Reizniece-Ozola points out it is not the number but the efficiency that needs to change. She believes management of public real estate is one of serious issues to be dealt with.

Real estate market prices are down 40% versus 2008, while state administration costs have spiked 20%. We must seriously consider which property to keep and which to sell, she says.

Harmony Center representative Ivars Zarins agrees the number of ministries must be assessed thoroughly despite historically it is that each party has its own ministry. Unless this is done, state administration efficiency will not improve, he says.

Zarins believes there is a need for a single National Economy Ministry which would combine the current Economy, Transport and Regional Development Ministries as well as various social matters.


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