10 questions to: For Development/For!

This time around it's ten questions to the For Development/For! party.

1. Do you plan to reduce public administration?

We want to use more of the opportunities provided by digital technologies, for example, by automating processes in public administration, replacing routine procedures carried out by officials and freeing up time for solving more complex tasks. 

2. What are the three ministries that you would most like to lead?

Education Ministry, Health Ministry and Justice Ministry.

3. How should the work of the Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau (KNAB) be changed?

•  Its abilities should be improved; this includes attracting international experts and employees.

•  The KNAB should be freed from carrying out tiny "technical" functions.

•  Whistleblowing culture and instruments should be improved.

•  The corruption prevention task should be revised, so that the fines, which are often formal, would not create any extra cynicism about the fight against corruption.

4. Should Latvia remain within the European Union and NATO?

Of course. And not only that, Latvia should make these unions even more closely integrated. It means that Latvia should be at the "core" of closer EU cooperation (as concerns economy, justice, security, and defense) as well as the "core" of NATO. Latvia should be among the countries which consequently meet their obligations (including over defense investments), and it should be ready to quickly admit a larger contingent of NATO and European forces on its soil. 

5. Should gambling business be limited in Latvia?

•  There should be a united blacklist of gambling clients (i.e., a list common to all gambling houses of people who are barred from entering due to addiction or other reasons)

•  Businesses and the public media should be instructed to inform people about the risks of gambling addiction on a more responsible and wider scale.

•  Scandinavian principles over regulating gambling should be put to use (for example, by following changes in demand and reducing the number of gambling venues should the demand start growing)

6. Name three economic measures that could substantially increase budget revenues.

1) Fighting the shadow economy, especially:

•  concertedly and steeply reducing the flow of non-digital cash

•  promoting self-regulation across industries (striking up general agreements over higher minimum pay in construction, retail and other high-risk industries)

•  introducing reverse VAT payments on a wider scale

2) Raising the minimum wage

3) Increasing VAT and taxes for luxury items, as well as polluting and unhealthy substances

7. Should defense expenses be increased to 2.5% of GDP within the next few years?

Latvia should consequently meet its NATO obligations by providing defense funding of at least 2% of GDP. If this figure is raised across NATO, it should be met without any doubt. Latvian investment into state and public security should be increased, but it should not always be counted as part of these 2%. Cyber security, preventive diplomacy, information analysis, strategic communication, media literacy and the safety of democratic processes can be set as examples. 

8. Which political forces do you consider as potential allies, and which would you refuse to work with?

Possible allies: the New Conservative Party and New Unity

Danger: Harmony and KPV LV

9. Is another President of Latvia be needed for the next term? What should the criteria be?

Yes. The criteria: an impeccable reputation, competence in state- as well as European and global matters; and the ability to represent the state across the globe. 

10. Do you support the Cohabitation Act, which would also provide a basis for legal relations for same-sex couples?

Yes. All families are equal, and the families which cannot get married in Latvia yet should be given a humane chance to stand together and share responsibility and care over one another; they should have the right to state protection.

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