The Foreign Ministry’s feedback survey on business diplomacy indicates that Estonian companies appreciate the support offered by the ministry, and use it actively when entering new markets and boosting exports.
According to Andres Rundu, the Undersecretary for Economic and Development Affairs, entrepreneurs have recognised the rapid development of business diplomacy. “Businesses have noticed our strategic steps to reinforce the business diplomacy support we are offering. For example, we have received positive feedback about our ambassadors advocating more for our companies and the Foreign Ministry showing flexibility in reacting to the interests of companies on foreign markets,” Rundu said.
The feedback showed that companies would mainly appreciate the Foreign Ministry’s support in creating business contacts abroad and passing on information. The survey also highlighted that this support would be most useful in Russia, United Arab Emirates, China, Japan, South Korea, Germany, the United Kingdom, and African and Scandinavian countries.
“We have active business diplomats in representations across the world. For example, in Abu Dhabi, we have an ambassador who is working closely with Estonian companies, and a business and investment officer will join the embassy soon. From late August, Estonia has had a chargé d’affaires in Seoul, who will set up the embassy and boost the business diplomacy dimension. We also have the newly-appointed Ambassador at Large for African Economic Affairs, Margus Rava,” Rundu said, outlining recent steps in external economy policy.
In total, 66 Estonian companies from various sectors took the 2020 business diplomacy survey. 54 companies responded that they were very satisfied or satisfied with the support offered by the Foreign Ministry. More than a half of the respondents said they had used the help of a foreign mission or honorary consul of Estonia when doing business abroad.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Estonia