Moldova recognised the Republic of Estonia on 28.08.1991 and Estonia recognised Moldova on 20.02.1992. Diplomatic relations between Estonia and Moldova were established on 10 November 1992. Estonia covers Moldova from the Estonian Embassy in Kiev (Ambassador Sulev Kannike). Victor Guzun is the Moldovan ambassador in Estonia. As of October 2006, Estonia is also represented in Moldova by Honorary Consul Igor Goncearov. In October 2012 Moldova opened an honorary consulate in Tartu, where Tiit Vapper is the honorary consul.
For a long time Estonian-Moldovan relations were not very intensive, but they have become considerably closer in recent years. Moldova’s clear choice and European integration have enabled bilateral co-operation to focus on rendering assistance to Moldova in the framework of bilateral and multilateral co-operation. Moldova has been one of Estonia’s priority partner countries for development co-operation since 2006. In rendering help to Moldova, Estonia has mostly focused on projects for raising the capability of the public sector, providing assistance to the establishment of an e-state information system, and on health care, environmental and educational projects.
The Estonia-Moldova parliamentary friendship group was established in the Riigikogu in September 2005 and re-established in April 2007 (chairman Marianne Mikko). In the Moldovan Parliament, the Moldova-Estonia parliamentary friendship group was established in 2006.
|March 2012||Minister of Agriculture Helir-Valdor Seeder|
|July 2010||Minister of Regional Affairs Siim-Valmar Kiisler|
|November 2007||Prime Minister Andrus Ansip|
|April 2007||Chairman of the Riigikogu Ene Ergma|
|March 2007||Foreign Minister Urmas Paet|
|October 2006||Foreign Minister Urmas Paet|
|May 2006||Minister of Justice Rein Lang|
|March 2006||President Arnold Rüütel|
|July 2005||Foreign Minister Urmas Paet|
|August 2012||Parliament Speaker Vlad Plahotniuc|
|July 2012||Minister of Agriculture and Food Industry Vasile Bumacov|
|November 2011||Youth and Sport Minister Ion Cebanu|
|October 2011||Prime Minister Vladimir Filat, Foreign Minister Iurie Leancă, Minister of Defence Vitalie Marinută, Minister of Social Affairs Valentina Buliga, Minister of Education Mihai Sleahtitchi, Minister of the Environment Gheorge Salaru|
|August 2010||Minister of Agriculture and Food Industry Valeriu Cosarciuc|
|June 2010||Foreign Minister Iurie Leancă|
|September 2005||President Vladimir Voronin and Foreign Minister Andrei Stratan|
- Co-operation Agreement in the Field of Commerce and Economy (came into force 31.10.95);
- Co-operation Protocol between the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Estonia and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Moldova (came into force 03.04.1996)
- Agreement between the Government of the Republic of Estonia and the Government of the Republic of Moldova on International Transport of Passengers and Goods by Road (21.04.1997)
- Agreement on the Avoidance of Double Taxation with Income Tax and Capital Tax and the Evasion of Taxes (came into force on 21.07.98);
- Agreement on the exchange of industrial property protection documentation between the State Agency on Industrial Property Protection of the Republic of Moldova and the Estonian Patent Office (came into force 6.07.2000)
- Agreement on Co-operation in the Fight against Crime (came into force 28.12.00)
- Agreement on Cultural Co-operation (came into force 21.08.2008)
- Co-operation agreement between the Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of Estonia and the Ministry of Local Public Administrations of Moldova (came into force 13.02.2009)
- Implementation protocol between the government of the Republic of Estonia and the government of the Republic of Moldova on the agreement on readmission of illegally residing persons between the European Community and the Republic of Moldova (came into force 10.05.2010)
- Memorandum of mutual understanding between the Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Estonia and the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Industry of the Republic of Moldova on research and economic co-operation in the field of agriculture (came into force 16.08.2010)
- Agreement on bilateral co-operation between the Tax and Customs Board of the Republic of Estonia and the Customs Service of the Republic of Moldova (came into force 10.11.2010)
- Co-operation agreement between the Border Guard Board of the Police and Border Guard Board of the Republic of Estonia and the Border Guard Service of the Republic of Moldova (came into force 21.12.2010)
- Agreement for the Protection of Investments (came into force 21.04.2011)
- Agreement on Co-operation in Education, Culture, Youth Affairs and Sports (came into force 10.12.2011)
- Social Security Agreement Between Estonia and Moldova (came into force 01.08.2012)
In addition, many bilateral agreements have been concluded between various agencies.
Trade between Estonia and Moldova 2004-2012 (in millions EUR):
Source: Statistical Office of Estonia
Main export articles in 2012:
- Animal products (primarily frozen fish) – 32%
- Machinery and equipment (monitors and projectors, electrical switching devices) – 21%
- Chemical products (carbolic acid; paints and varnishes based on dispersed synthetic or natural polymers) – 16%
Main import articles in 2012:
- Food products and beverages (alcohol; confections; baked goods) – 35%
- Measuring or medical instruments (instruments for measuring usage of gas, liquid or electricity or measuring production output) – 30%
- Transportation vehicles (cargo wagons or flatcars to be towed behind trains or trams) – 14%
Trade turnover in 2012 totalled 8.58 million EUR, of which export made up 5.83 million EUR and import 2.75 million EUR.
In 2012 Moldova was Estonia’s 70th trade partner, 65th export partner and 57th import partner. Moldova is an agrarian-industrial nation. The primary agricultural articles of export are wine (including cognac) and there are about 300 000 people involved in Moldova’s wine industry (mostly large national companies).
In 2012 Estonian Minister of Agriculture Helir-Valdor Seeder visited Moldova. Moldova is interested in Estonia’s experiences and co-operation between the ministries has gained momentum.
In October of 2011 an economic forum took place within the framework of the Moldovan prime minister’s visit to Estonia in order to create new contacts among businessmen. A business delegation also visited Muuga Port to intensify business ties there.
In August 2010 Moldovan Minister of Agriculture and Food Industry Valeriu Cosarciuc visited Estonia and signed the memorandum of mutual understanding on research and economic co-operation in the field of agriculture between the two countries. In July of that same year Minister for Regional Affairs Siim Kiisler visited Moldova and reported that Moldova is very interested in Estonia’s experiences with designing and implementing regional development support programmes. An action plan was concluded between the two countries for implementing co-operation in the area of regional policies. In June 2010 Moldovan Foreign Minister Iurie Leanca visited Tallinn, and during a meeting with Foreign Minister Urmas Paet they signed the bilateral agreement for the protection of investments.
According to Bank of Estonia data, in 2012 the total volume of Estonian direct investments made in Moldova was about 8.2 million euros. Moldovan direct investments in Estonia totalled 1.8 million euros. The primary sector for Estonian investments in Moldova was financial and insurance services. Moldova’s investments in Estonia mostly went to wholesale and retail trade.
Looking to the future, Moldova certainly has some natural advantages working in its favour - geographic proximity to EU markets, a favourable climate, and gradual growth in the purchasing power of the population.
Estonia has supported activities related to Moldova since 2000, and as of 2006 Moldova has been one of Estonia’s priority partner countries. Our continuing interest in Moldova is confirmed by Estonia’s Development Co-operation and Humanitarian Aid Development Plan for the Years 2011-2015. Priority sectors for Estonia are education, inclusive and sustainable economic development, establishing good administrative practice, information and communications technology, e-solutions, and paying attention to the more vulnerable groups in society (children, women).
As of 2000 Estonia’s contribution to various projects has increased tenfold. In addition to its co-operation with the Foreign Ministry, successful co-operation with Moldova has also taken place through other Estonian ministries and institutions (Ministry of Social Affairs, Ministry of the Interior, Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of the Environment, Ministry of Education and Research, the National Audit Office, Academy of Security Sciences, and the Border Guard Board).
The Estonian Centre of Eastern Partnership, opened in 2011, creates a foundation for even more extensive co-operation, focusing on increasing the administrative capacity of our Eastern Partners and sharing our own reform experiences. Seminars have been held for our Eastern Partners, including Moldova, on increasing negotiation skills as well as ethics. In addition, a training session on public procurements for Moldovan officials and a negotiations training course for the Moldovan diplomats working with the Transnistria issue have been held.
Culture and education
There are about 110 Moldovan citizens living in Estonia. The Estonian-Moldovan Society was established in 1989 with the purpose of preserving the language, culture and contacts with the homeland. The long-time chairwoman of the society was Veronika Palandi. In the framework of the International Association of National Cultural Societies of Estonia “Lyra”, the Moldovan Cultural Society “Luchaferul” is active. During the celebration of the spring holiday in March 2011, the dance group Bucuria gave its first public performance. Many artists from Moldova also live in Estonia.
Estonia carries out many education-related development co-operation projects with Moldova. Since 2010 the Foreign Ministry has supported the master’s and doctoral studies of Moldovan students in Estonian universities and research and development institutions. The Estonian School of Diplomacy contributes to the training of young Moldovan diplomats. For more information about the Foreign Ministry’s development co-operation projects in the education sector, go here: https://rakendused.vm.ee/akta/index.php?language=eng.
In October 2011 ministers Rein Lang and Mihail Sleahtitchi signed an agreement on co-operation in education, culture, youth affairs and sports, and in November 2011 Youth and Sport Minister Ion Cebanu came to Estonia in order to become acquainted with Estonia’s youth policies. In May 2011 the Ministry of Education and Research, within the framework of the European Commission’s TAIEX programme, organised a study visit on the topic of vocational education for three high state officials from Moldova.
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