The Minister of Foreign Affairs Keit Pentus-Rosimannus stated that during today’s session of the Government, a decision was made to establish the Embassy of the Republic of Estonia in Canberra, the capital of Australia.
According to Pentus-Rosimannus, establishing the embassy in Canberra is a right step as the Estonian community in Australia is large and continues to grow. “There are approximately 10 000 Estonians currently residing in Australia and it continues to be a popular destination among Estonians for temporary emigration,” the Minister of Foreign Affairs said. “An embassy will allow us to better protect Estonian citizens residing in Australia and to represent Estonia,” the Minister added.
The expenses relating to the establishment of the embassy shall be covered by relevant funds from the budget of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and no additional funds shall be allocated from the state budget. Upon establishing the embassy in Canberra, the Consulate General in Sydney shall be closed and the decommitted budget funds shall be used to finance the embassy. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has reached an agreement with the Finnish Ministry of Foreign Affairs to temporarily begin carrying out the activities of the embassy from 1 January 2015 in the facilities of the Embassy of Finland in Canberra and start using the premises next to the Embassy of Finland in Canberra as the embassy building starting from the fall of 2015.
Australia recognised the Republic of Estonia after Estonia was accepted into the League of Nations on 22 September 1921. On 27 August 1991, Australia re-recognised Estonia’s independence and diplomatic relations were established on 21 November 1991.
From 2007–2010, the Estonian Ambassador accredited to Australia was residing in Tokyo. As of 2010, the non-resident Ambassador permanently resides in Tallinn. The Estonian Consulate General in Sydney has been active since 2011. Estonia also has four honorary consuls in Australia.
As of 1992, the Australian Ambassador in Stockholm is co-accredited to Estonia as a non-resident diplomatic representative. Australia’s honorary consul in Estonia is Mati Peekma.