22 April marks a hundred years from the day the Swiss ambassador in Germany sent a formal letter to the representative of Estonia in Berlin, confirming Switzerland’s de jure recognition of the Republic of Estonia and establishing formal diplomatic contacts.
The first ambassador of Switzerland was accredited to Estonia before the Second World War in 1938 and he resided in Helsinki. The close commercial ties between Estonia and Switzerland before the Second World War are evident by the trade agreement signed in 1925, which was renewed in 1938.
Switzerland never recognised the incorporation of Estonia into the Soviet Union and re-recognised the Republic of Estonia on 28 August 1991. Diplomatic relations were restored on 4 September 1991.
Today, Estonia and Switzerland enjoy close and efficient relations. Switzerland’s contribution during the restoration of Estonia’s defence structures was crucial, for example in supply procurements and training, and establishing the Baltic Defence College. In 2020, Switzerland joined NATO’s cyber defence centre of excellence in Tallinn as a contributing partner.
Bilateral trade has more than tripled over the past ten years. Switzerland’s investments into Estonia have grown from €200 million to €448 million in the past seven years.
High-level visits between Estonia and Switzerland are planned this year to mark the centenary.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Estonia