On 7-9 March the Estonian delegation promoting Estonia’s Security Council candidature for the period 2020-21 visited Cuba. In Havana, the delegation led by Ambassador Margus Kolga met with the Minister of Foreign Affairs Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla and with Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Ms. Anayansi Rodríguez Camejo. In addition to the issues related to the UN Security Council and Estonia’s candidature, the discussions focused on the possibilities for enhancing bilateral cooperation. In 2017, Estonia signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Republic of Cuba for holding political consultations. Estonia was also the first European Union member state, which ratified the EU-Cuba Political Dialogue and Cooperation Agreement (PDCA).
Along with holding political consultations with Estonia, Cuba is also interested in potential cooperation in areas such as biotechnology, tourism, renewable energy and e-governance. They are interested in establishing relations between universities and research institutes. Cuba sees e-governance as having great potential in increasing the effectiveness of Cuban state institutions as well as in improving the welfare of the society as a whole. Cuba is interested in enhancing cooperation both with the European Union and with individual member states. In the area of e-governance, it is first and foremost important to raise awareness of the Government and the society about digital applications and increasing trust in them. Precise opportunities for cooperation and courses of action need to be identified in the course of political consultations. “There is visible evidence of readiness to open up to the outside world and to cooperate with the European Union and with its member states. This opportunity should be seized”, affirmed Ambassador Kolga at the end of the visit to Cuba.
The Delegation returned to Estonia on 10 March 2019.