Speeches president http://admin2.president.ee/index.php/en/official-duties/speeches 2018-07-26T07:00:36Z Joomla! 1.5 - Open Source Content Management President Kersti Kaljulaid at the International Westphalian Peace Prize award ceremony in Münster 2018-07-13T22:00:00Z 2018-07-13T22:00:00Z http://admin2.president.ee/index.php/en/official-duties/speeches/14475-2018-07-17-11-25-26 Mailin Aasmäe mailin.aasmae@vpk.ee <p>President Steinmeier,</p> <p>Your Excellencies,</p> <p>Ladies and Gentlemen</p> <p>I sincerely thank you all for awarding Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania with the eleventh International Westphalia Peace Prize. Thank you very much. Receiving the award for democratic development is a great honour and privilege for Estonia. Especially at the time when we are celebrating the centenary of our statehood. Especially here in Nordrhein-Westfalen that has traditionally had good relations with Estonia and in Münster with its history of fostering peace in Europe.</p> <p>The Westphalian Peace Treaty signed here in Münster in 1648 marked the end of the Thirty Years' War. A war that we still remember for its cruelties. At the time, Estonia of course was not yet an independent country. However, maybe you did not know, but Estonian men were fighting in the Battle in Lützen in 1632 in the army led by the Swedish King Gustav II Adolf. The king lost his life in the battle, but just before the battle, he managed to sign an order to establish the first university in Estonia in Tartu.</p> <p>So, something good comes out of every crisis and links us for centuries. The Westphalian Peace Treaty was the first all-European peace treaty. After the brutalities of the war, it shaped our thinking about war and about peace. It also laid a foundation for the modern international system of sovereign states. Of course, the Westphalian system was not perfect. As we know by now, it did not guarantee everlasting peace and prevent wars.</p> <p>President Steinmeier,</p> <p>Your Excellencies,</p> <p>Ladies and Gentlemen</p> <p>I sincerely thank you all for awarding Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania with the eleventh International Westphalia Peace Prize. Thank you very much. Receiving the award for democratic development is a great honour and privilege for Estonia. Especially at the time when we are celebrating the centenary of our statehood. Especially here in Nordrhein-Westfalen that has traditionally had good relations with Estonia and in Münster with its history of fostering peace in Europe.</p> <p>The Westphalian Peace Treaty signed here in Münster in 1648 marked the end of the Thirty Years' War. A war that we still remember for its cruelties. At the time, Estonia of course was not yet an independent country. However, maybe you did not know, but Estonian men were fighting in the Battle in Lützen in 1632 in the army led by the Swedish King Gustav II Adolf. The king lost his life in the battle, but just before the battle, he managed to sign an order to establish the first university in Estonia in Tartu.</p> <p>So, something good comes out of every crisis and links us for centuries. The Westphalian Peace Treaty was the first all-European peace treaty. After the brutalities of the war, it shaped our thinking about war and about peace. It also laid a foundation for the modern international system of sovereign states. Of course, the Westphalian system was not perfect. As we know by now, it did not guarantee everlasting peace and prevent wars.</p> President of the Republic at the Graduation Ceremony of Sciences Po 2018-06-29T22:00:00Z 2018-06-29T22:00:00Z http://admin2.president.ee/index.php/en/official-duties/speeches/14443-president-of-the-republic-at-the-graduation-ceremony-of-sciences-po- Anne-Pille Krigolson Anne.Krigolson@vpk.ee <p>Dear graduates!</p> <p>Please accept my sincerest congratulations! You are coming to the end of your formal education path, which we, the generation of your parents, lovingly prepared for you.</p> <p>We did it with your best interests in our mind. Yet, we did it from the perspective of the past. You have acquired an education we thought would prepare you adequately for the challenges of your generation. Of course, as all loving parents before us, we've got some things right and missed some opportunities.</p> <p>At some point, we realized that the technological cycle has been shortening. We did foresee, to a certain extent, that the 21st century would see the birth and death of much more inventions than the 20th century. After all, only petroleum lamp and horse cart truly expired in the 20th century. Most inventions just became more efficient, but survived.</p> <p>We did not foresee that the first mobile phones we gave you would be from Stone Age by the time you graduate from university.</p> <p>We did not foresee that the digital disruption to our societies would be so profound that many of you will be able to work very differently from us already at the time of your graduation.</p> <p>We did not foresee that geography becomes meaningless for many professionals while seeking jobs. We did not foresee that many of you would not need to do what economists thought was inevitable for a whole century – gather into enterprises in order to work in the most productive manner.</p> <p>Dear graduates!</p> <p>Please accept my sincerest congratulations! You are coming to the end of your formal education path, which we, the generation of your parents, lovingly prepared for you.</p> <p>We did it with your best interests in our mind. Yet, we did it from the perspective of the past. You have acquired an education we thought would prepare you adequately for the challenges of your generation. Of course, as all loving parents before us, we've got some things right and missed some opportunities.</p> <p>At some point, we realized that the technological cycle has been shortening. We did foresee, to a certain extent, that the 21st century would see the birth and death of much more inventions than the 20th century. After all, only petroleum lamp and horse cart truly expired in the 20th century. Most inventions just became more efficient, but survived.</p> <p>We did not foresee that the first mobile phones we gave you would be from Stone Age by the time you graduate from university.</p> <p>We did not foresee that the digital disruption to our societies would be so profound that many of you will be able to work very differently from us already at the time of your graduation.</p> <p>We did not foresee that geography becomes meaningless for many professionals while seeking jobs. We did not foresee that many of you would not need to do what economists thought was inevitable for a whole century – gather into enterprises in order to work in the most productive manner.</p> President Kersti Kaljulaid's keynote speech at the Northern Light Summit 2018-06-29T10:53:59Z 2018-06-29T10:53:59Z http://admin2.president.ee/index.php/en/official-duties/speeches/14440-president-kersti-kaljulaids-keynote-speech-at-the-northern-light-summit Mailin Aasmäe mailin.aasmae@vpk.ee <p>Ladies and gentlemen, dear listeners</p> <p>It's an honour for me to stand before so many business leaders and decision-makers, and to describe to you the Estonian fairy tale of development of the last quarter of a century. All successful management strategies in rapidly changing or even unpredictable global environment involve grasping opportunities, while managing the risks. This applies for businesses and for states, even if their coping strategies have to be different.</p> <p>I admit that for obvious reasons not all Estonians share the view that our development over the last 25 years has been 'great'. However, by the end of the day probably everybody understands that you cannot have the Scandinavian welfare system and Singaporean lean state, Scandinavian wage levels and Latvian low prices all at once. Anyway, this is roughly, what Estonian people demand from their rulers and I feel squaring these circles the best way is also a key to sustain the success what Estonia has achieved in last 25 years. Teething troubles of a young democracy, as you see.</p> <p>In 1992, when Estonia exited the rouble zone and adopted Estonian krona, we did it in an innovative way. Our then President of the Central bank Siim Kallas, whom most of you here know very well, I believe, was facing resistance from the IMF to support our monetary reform. The reason? Nobody had gone so bold, so radical, so high risk and, from the other hand, so simple way. Simply adopting the krona, fixing its exchange rate to gain public confidence in it, floating it free from day one to avoid black market of currency exchange, and to adopt a law that budget has to balance, because you cannot sustain a currency board without fiscal stability. IMF said no. Impossible. Money would leave the country. You will never balance the budget, poor as you are. You will have to devalue at one point and therefore promising people that 8 kronas will buy you 1 deutsch-mark forever is not sustainable.</p> <p>I am not saying IMF was not right about risks. Of course it was. But Estonia started to exhibit the character which later brought us the digital state which is now our global image. They could not consider this, as we ourselves could not say what it was. By now, we know. Estonia can, unlike no other country, create permissive legal environment for innovation, both public and private.</p> <p>Ladies and gentlemen, dear listeners</p> <p>It's an honour for me to stand before so many business leaders and decision-makers, and to describe to you the Estonian fairy tale of development of the last quarter of a century. All successful management strategies in rapidly changing or even unpredictable global environment involve grasping opportunities, while managing the risks. This applies for businesses and for states, even if their coping strategies have to be different.</p> <p>I admit that for obvious reasons not all Estonians share the view that our development over the last 25 years has been 'great'. However, by the end of the day probably everybody understands that you cannot have the Scandinavian welfare system and Singaporean lean state, Scandinavian wage levels and Latvian low prices all at once. Anyway, this is roughly, what Estonian people demand from their rulers and I feel squaring these circles the best way is also a key to sustain the success what Estonia has achieved in last 25 years. Teething troubles of a young democracy, as you see.</p> <p>In 1992, when Estonia exited the rouble zone and adopted Estonian krona, we did it in an innovative way. Our then President of the Central bank Siim Kallas, whom most of you here know very well, I believe, was facing resistance from the IMF to support our monetary reform. The reason? Nobody had gone so bold, so radical, so high risk and, from the other hand, so simple way. Simply adopting the krona, fixing its exchange rate to gain public confidence in it, floating it free from day one to avoid black market of currency exchange, and to adopt a law that budget has to balance, because you cannot sustain a currency board without fiscal stability. IMF said no. Impossible. Money would leave the country. You will never balance the budget, poor as you are. You will have to devalue at one point and therefore promising people that 8 kronas will buy you 1 deutsch-mark forever is not sustainable.</p> <p>I am not saying IMF was not right about risks. Of course it was. But Estonia started to exhibit the character which later brought us the digital state which is now our global image. They could not consider this, as we ourselves could not say what it was. By now, we know. Estonia can, unlike no other country, create permissive legal environment for innovation, both public and private.</p> At the Victory Day parade, Tallinn Song Festival Grounds 2018-06-23T11:03:22Z 2018-06-23T11:03:22Z http://admin2.president.ee/index.php/en/official-duties/speeches/14417-the-president-of-the-republic-of-estonia-at-the-victory-day-parade-23-june-2018-tallinn-song-festival-grounds Eve Salumaa eve.salumaa@vpk.ee <p>Dear Defence League members, fellow people of Estonia here in Tallinn or in homes throughout Estonia,<br />Today, here at the Song Festival Grounds, organized by the Defence League, we bear witness to the Estonian people's will to defend their country. We see everyone's commitment, will and preparedness – and we also demonstrate it. The parade raises our self-confidence as we show that, if necessary, the entire people are involved in our defence.</p> <p>To our allies this parade demonstrates that Estonians are prepared to stand up for themselves if needed to. To our opponents the parade demonstrates that Estonia's power is not merely limited to professional soldiers or even trained reservists. Estonia's power lies in the readiness of the entire people to stand up for themselves and support each other in hardship.</p> <p>Our own power and will is the greatest guarantee of our security. Our response to crises related to public safety – such as this dry spring's forest fires – involves the entire people. The people turned out alongside professional rescue workers, and professional rescuers know how to interact with volunteers.</p> <p>Accidents happen. They cannot be completely prevented. Unfortunately, we must admit that the fires are sparked by our own actions. Much work must be done before everyone senses their responsibility to act pre-emptively, to keep at least avoidable accidents from happening. In this endeavour, rescuers and volunteers are also working side-by-side. I would like to thank all the rescue-service volunteers – a contingent that has always included many Defence League members. Every challenge that we resolve jointly shows yet again that we would also act in concert in the case of a serious security crisis. Precisely this readiness is the best kind of prevention – people who want with all their hearts to defend themselves are indeed defended. The people's own commitment is what gives real value to our readiness, skills, knowledge and equipment.</p> <p>Fellow people of Estonia!</p> <p>We live in a world of paradoxes. On one hand, today Estonia is better protected than ever before. We have perseveringly developed our independent defence capability while establishing strong alliances with friends who share the same values we do.</p> <p>Dear Defence League members, fellow people of Estonia here in Tallinn or in homes throughout Estonia,<br />Today, here at the Song Festival Grounds, organized by the Defence League, we bear witness to the Estonian people's will to defend their country. We see everyone's commitment, will and preparedness – and we also demonstrate it. The parade raises our self-confidence as we show that, if necessary, the entire people are involved in our defence.</p> <p>To our allies this parade demonstrates that Estonians are prepared to stand up for themselves if needed to. To our opponents the parade demonstrates that Estonia's power is not merely limited to professional soldiers or even trained reservists. Estonia's power lies in the readiness of the entire people to stand up for themselves and support each other in hardship.</p> <p>Our own power and will is the greatest guarantee of our security. Our response to crises related to public safety – such as this dry spring's forest fires – involves the entire people. The people turned out alongside professional rescue workers, and professional rescuers know how to interact with volunteers.</p> <p>Accidents happen. They cannot be completely prevented. Unfortunately, we must admit that the fires are sparked by our own actions. Much work must be done before everyone senses their responsibility to act pre-emptively, to keep at least avoidable accidents from happening. In this endeavour, rescuers and volunteers are also working side-by-side. I would like to thank all the rescue-service volunteers – a contingent that has always included many Defence League members. Every challenge that we resolve jointly shows yet again that we would also act in concert in the case of a serious security crisis. Precisely this readiness is the best kind of prevention – people who want with all their hearts to defend themselves are indeed defended. The people's own commitment is what gives real value to our readiness, skills, knowledge and equipment.</p> <p>Fellow people of Estonia!</p> <p>We live in a world of paradoxes. On one hand, today Estonia is better protected than ever before. We have perseveringly developed our independent defence capability while establishing strong alliances with friends who share the same values we do.</p> On Town Hall Square in Tartu 22 June 2018 2018-06-22T10:28:02Z 2018-06-22T10:28:02Z http://admin2.president.ee/index.php/en/official-duties/speeches/14413-the-president-of-the-republic-of-estonia-on-town-hall-square-in-tartu-22-june-2018- Elke Rimpel Elke.Rimpel@vpk.ee <p>Dear people of Tartu and distinguished guests,</p> <p>I am very glad to welcome you in the heart of the city of Tartu. On the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the Republic of Estonia, we are graced today by the presence of good friends with whom we share common values. A century ago, they, like us, went through a crucial period in the formative years of their statehood.</p> <p>I am pleased that we can commemorate our country's anniversary here in Tartu in particular, as it is the home of our oldest and largest university. Our only Universitas. The university is what made Tartu into what it is for Estonians and the entire world.</p> <p>Above all, Tartu is a key bulwark for Estonians' and Europeans' academic world.</p> <p>Dear people of Tartu and distinguished guests,</p> <p>I am very glad to welcome you in the heart of the city of Tartu. On the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the Republic of Estonia, we are graced today by the presence of good friends with whom we share common values. A century ago, they, like us, went through a crucial period in the formative years of their statehood.</p> <p>I am pleased that we can commemorate our country's anniversary here in Tartu in particular, as it is the home of our oldest and largest university. Our only Universitas. The university is what made Tartu into what it is for Estonians and the entire world.</p> <p>Above all, Tartu is a key bulwark for Estonians' and Europeans' academic world.</p> Address of the President at the dinner in the white hall of the Museum of Tartu University 2018-06-21T22:00:00Z 2018-06-21T22:00:00Z http://admin2.president.ee/index.php/en/official-duties/speeches/14419-president-of-the-republic-on-the-occasion-of-the-visit-of-presidents-of-finland-georgia-iceland-latvia-and-poland-to-celebrate-the-100th-anniversary-of-the-estonian-republic-22nd-june-2018-in-tartu Eve Salumaa eve.salumaa@vpk.ee <p>Dear colleagues,</p> <p>Distinguished Guests,</p> <p>Ladies and Gentlemen,</p> <p>It is my pleasure and great honour to welcome you in Tartu to celebrate among friends the centenary of the Estonian Republic with Gaudeamus – the Baltic students' song and dance festival held since 1956.</p> <p>As a home to Estonia's oldest university, Tartu has always carried a sense of freedom. Greatest figures of Estonian national awakening time studied and worked in Tartu. And 30 years ago it was in Tartu where our national flag was waved again in public.</p> <p>I remember that emotional spring day as a student very vividly. It truly felt like spring was everywhere, no clouds in the sky. At least for the young people.</p> <p>Tartu is not only about being an Estonian, national awakening, independence and regaining it. Tartu, which we also call Athens of the River Emajõgi, has a special place also for Finland, Georgia, Iceland, Latvia and Poland.</p> <p>As kindred people,</p> <p>the relations between Finland and Estonia have always had a special importance and meaning. Our languages, culture and similar world perception have brought us close together.</p> <p>Since 1991 Finland has permanently been present in Tartu – with its students, lecturers, Fraternitas Fennica, cultural and business relations and Tampere Maja to name</p> <p>a few visible and noticeable links, but also through countless unnoticeable links. Integration between Finland and Estonia through cooperation has become part of our everyday lives. We used to say that our language brings us together, now it is the only thing which separates us.</p> <p>Dear colleagues,</p> <p>Distinguished Guests,</p> <p>Ladies and Gentlemen,</p> <p>It is my pleasure and great honour to welcome you in Tartu to celebrate among friends the centenary of the Estonian Republic with Gaudeamus – the Baltic students' song and dance festival held since 1956.</p> <p>As a home to Estonia's oldest university, Tartu has always carried a sense of freedom. Greatest figures of Estonian national awakening time studied and worked in Tartu. And 30 years ago it was in Tartu where our national flag was waved again in public.</p> <p>I remember that emotional spring day as a student very vividly. It truly felt like spring was everywhere, no clouds in the sky. At least for the young people.</p> <p>Tartu is not only about being an Estonian, national awakening, independence and regaining it. Tartu, which we also call Athens of the River Emajõgi, has a special place also for Finland, Georgia, Iceland, Latvia and Poland.</p> <p>As kindred people,</p> <p>the relations between Finland and Estonia have always had a special importance and meaning. Our languages, culture and similar world perception have brought us close together.</p> <p>Since 1991 Finland has permanently been present in Tartu – with its students, lecturers, Fraternitas Fennica, cultural and business relations and Tampere Maja to name</p> <p>a few visible and noticeable links, but also through countless unnoticeable links. Integration between Finland and Estonia through cooperation has become part of our everyday lives. We used to say that our language brings us together, now it is the only thing which separates us.</p> At the Global Leadership Summit in Gothenburg 2018-06-13T22:00:00Z 2018-06-13T22:00:00Z http://admin2.president.ee/index.php/en/official-duties/speeches/14374-at-the-global-leadership-summit-in-gothenburg Mailin Aasmäe mailin.aasmae@vpk.ee <p style="margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;">First, thank you for inviting me. Estonia and Volvo are perfect partners, because globally you employ close to 100 000 people. Estonia on the other hand has 117 000 people working in industry – everybody else is in services. Therefore, we are a perfect match. However, there are other similarities. Your annual turnover is 5 billions bigger than Estonia’s GDP. So we are actually very well matched.</p> <p style="margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;">Estonia is globally the only digitally transformed society that has the full support of its state.</p> <p style="margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;">First, I would have to prove to you why I believe that we already have a digitally transformed society.</p> <p style="margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;">Up until last year, we thought that we can have a digital environment and if something goes wrong – because as you know in digital it always does, as you are always in Beta versions —there could be a paper alternative. Then last year it went wrong as a lot of digital chips were withdrawn from global market. One billion in fact.</p> <p style="margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;">Most of them opened doors in factories, but for us and some other countries it worked as a digital identity. In those other countries, these cards were simply closed down – nothing happened, nobody noticed.</p> <p style="margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;">Obviously, there were no services linked to digital identity. In Estonia, however, we almost had a riot. Not because we closed down the services – we did not–, but because some ID-cards would not get the patch online, so people had to go to the Police and Boarder Guards` office to get the patch.</p> <p style="margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;">First, thank you for inviting me. Estonia and Volvo are perfect partners, because globally you employ close to 100 000 people. Estonia on the other hand has 117 000 people working in industry – everybody else is in services. Therefore, we are a perfect match. However, there are other similarities. Your annual turnover is 5 billions bigger than Estonia’s GDP. So we are actually very well matched.</p> <p style="margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;">Estonia is globally the only digitally transformed society that has the full support of its state.</p> <p style="margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;">First, I would have to prove to you why I believe that we already have a digitally transformed society.</p> <p style="margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;">Up until last year, we thought that we can have a digital environment and if something goes wrong – because as you know in digital it always does, as you are always in Beta versions —there could be a paper alternative. Then last year it went wrong as a lot of digital chips were withdrawn from global market. One billion in fact.</p> <p style="margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;">Most of them opened doors in factories, but for us and some other countries it worked as a digital identity. In those other countries, these cards were simply closed down – nothing happened, nobody noticed.</p> <p style="margin-bottom: 0.0001pt;">Obviously, there were no services linked to digital identity. In Estonia, however, we almost had a riot. Not because we closed down the services – we did not–, but because some ID-cards would not get the patch online, so people had to go to the Police and Boarder Guards` office to get the patch.</p> At the WHO Conference „Health Systems for Prosperity and Solidarity: leaving no one behind" 2018-06-13T12:27:12Z 2018-06-13T12:27:12Z http://admin2.president.ee/index.php/en/official-duties/speeches/14366-at-the-who-conference-health-systems-for-prosperity-and-solidarity-leaving-no-one-behindq Mailin Aasmäe mailin.aasmae@vpk.ee <p>First of all, it is a privilege to celebrate jointly with you the centennial anniversary of the Estonian Republic this year and also the 10 year anniversary of the Tallinn Charter.</p> <p>In 2008, 53 countries signed the Tallinn Charter: Health Systems for Health and Wealth. The underlying values in the charter were solidarity, equity and universalism.</p> <p>Already at that time, the Charter was extremely broad raising the philosophy, which is now deeply rooted in the European societies, that health is a fundamental right of all people.</p> <p>The Charter described that people´s well-being is at the centre of the triangle of strong and resilient health systems, health and wealth. It is needless to state, that at this time, these values were forward-looking.</p> <p>Universal health coverage is one thing that makes it tolerable to have income inequality in societies because people know that one of their basic needs is covered. As you may know here in Estonia we have a single payer scheme where patients do not pay. We are very proud of it and we believe that we have a system that is also efficient and effective at the same time inclusive. These are the principles that were raised also in Tallinn Charter. It would be very sad if we arrived here in year 2018 and we would have to say that even if it is the Tallinn Charter we do not respect it. We do, I can assure you.</p> <p>The Charter did describe that people's wellbeing is at the center of the triangle of a strong and resilient health systems – health and wealth. Of course at that time these values were quite forward looking and world did not yet resemble too much what the Tallinn Charter was stating. I feel it is still relevant today. It does address major health challenges ahead. We have demographic change, widening socioeconomic disparities everywhere, limited resources, technological development which makes of course treatment more expensive and people´s rising expectations towards healthcare systems.</p> <p>Economic outlooks predict increasing inequalities in income and this does put pressure on everybody's health and social budgets.</p> <p>First of all, it is a privilege to celebrate jointly with you the centennial anniversary of the Estonian Republic this year and also the 10 year anniversary of the Tallinn Charter.</p> <p>In 2008, 53 countries signed the Tallinn Charter: Health Systems for Health and Wealth. The underlying values in the charter were solidarity, equity and universalism.</p> <p>Already at that time, the Charter was extremely broad raising the philosophy, which is now deeply rooted in the European societies, that health is a fundamental right of all people.</p> <p>The Charter described that people´s well-being is at the centre of the triangle of strong and resilient health systems, health and wealth. It is needless to state, that at this time, these values were forward-looking.</p> <p>Universal health coverage is one thing that makes it tolerable to have income inequality in societies because people know that one of their basic needs is covered. As you may know here in Estonia we have a single payer scheme where patients do not pay. We are very proud of it and we believe that we have a system that is also efficient and effective at the same time inclusive. These are the principles that were raised also in Tallinn Charter. It would be very sad if we arrived here in year 2018 and we would have to say that even if it is the Tallinn Charter we do not respect it. We do, I can assure you.</p> <p>The Charter did describe that people's wellbeing is at the center of the triangle of a strong and resilient health systems – health and wealth. Of course at that time these values were quite forward looking and world did not yet resemble too much what the Tallinn Charter was stating. I feel it is still relevant today. It does address major health challenges ahead. We have demographic change, widening socioeconomic disparities everywhere, limited resources, technological development which makes of course treatment more expensive and people´s rising expectations towards healthcare systems.</p> <p>Economic outlooks predict increasing inequalities in income and this does put pressure on everybody's health and social budgets.</p> President of the Republic on the occasion of the state visit of His Majesty King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands to the Republic of Estonia 2018-06-12T17:49:13Z 2018-06-12T17:49:13Z http://admin2.president.ee/index.php/en/official-duties/speeches/14365-president-of-the-republic-on-the-occasion-of-the-state-visit-of-his-majesty-king-willem-alexander-of-the-netherlands-to-the-republic-of-estonia Liis Lepik Liis.Lepik@vpk.ee <p>Your Majesty,<br />Distinguished Guests,<br />Ladies and Gentlemen,</p> <p>It is a great honour to receive Your Majesty in Estonia at the time we are celebrating the centenary of our statehood.</p> <p>Our diplomatic relations date to 1921, but our historical connections go back as far as the times of the Hanseatic League and Moedernegotie (Mother of all trades), the most important source of income for the Dutch, even before the Gouden Eeuw. It consisted of the trade with countries around the Baltic Sea in goods such as graan (grain) and hout (wood). Goederen (goods) that the Dutch traders were clever enough to invest in. For example, the timber shipped through Narva, the town on the border of the Western and Eastern civilisation, was partly used to build Amsterdam. The good economic and trade relations continue until now with the Netherlands being the third biggest foreign investor. And I am pleased that the traditional trade with grain and wood has expanded to more innovative, digital fields, sometimes combining the two.</p> <p>Your Majesty,<br />Distinguished Guests,<br />Ladies and Gentlemen,</p> <p>It is a great honour to receive Your Majesty in Estonia at the time we are celebrating the centenary of our statehood.</p> <p>Our diplomatic relations date to 1921, but our historical connections go back as far as the times of the Hanseatic League and Moedernegotie (Mother of all trades), the most important source of income for the Dutch, even before the Gouden Eeuw. It consisted of the trade with countries around the Baltic Sea in goods such as graan (grain) and hout (wood). Goederen (goods) that the Dutch traders were clever enough to invest in. For example, the timber shipped through Narva, the town on the border of the Western and Eastern civilisation, was partly used to build Amsterdam. The good economic and trade relations continue until now with the Netherlands being the third biggest foreign investor. And I am pleased that the traditional trade with grain and wood has expanded to more innovative, digital fields, sometimes combining the two.</p> President of the Republic at the Lennart Meri Conference dinner 2018-05-31T22:00:00Z 2018-05-31T22:00:00Z http://admin2.president.ee/index.php/en/official-duties/speeches/14332--president-of-the-republic-at-the-lennart-meri-conference-dinner- Anne-Pille Krigolson Anne.Krigolson@vpk.ee <p>Dear organisers, dear participants of the Lennart Meri security conference!</p> <p>This magnificent week is almost over. It's been a great week for Estonia – a "security Woodstock", as defined by Toomas Hendrik Ilves. And as always with festivals, the best comes last, to keep our attention and make us crave for more. And thank you, Riina, for organizing the Lennart Meri Conference for so many years, and also a happy birthday to you!</p> <p>As we sit here in Tallinn and discuss cyber- and conventional security matters, the world around us has not stopped. In Ukraine, during the last week alone, four people, including a 15 year old girl, have been killed in shellings, and another 15 people have been wounded. That's not a frozen conflict – that's war. And while we celebrate the centenary of the Georgian Republic, we also have to accept that for ten years – ten years already – we have not been able to do much about the partial occupation of Georgian territories. We carefully tread the words, calling the evil line of occupation in Georgia something else.</p> <p>When I asked the EU Monitoring Mission in November why exactly we use euphemisms like "Administrative Boundary Line", he could not give me a clear answer. I felt for him, because he had to stick to the agreed vocabulary. He noted that Georgians, though, call it "an occupation line". Why don't we give Georgians at least that little – recognition that part of its territory is occupied, in our every word and gesture? Calling an occupation occupation is something which our political predecessors did not hesitate to do – to the final little detail.</p> <p>We heard today at the conference my Austrian colleague, doctor Alexander Van der Bellen, who had an Estonian passport until he was 15 years old – only then did he realise that his passport was given out by a country that at that moment was not free. But, that passport was recognized.</p> <p>Similarly, some two months ago, I had a chance to board a brand new military transport plane of our eFP framework nation, the United Kingdom. The plane had hardly done a few rounds around the globe. Everything was 21st century, apart from some old-fashioned paper-maps that were probably there only for back-up. So the maps were old. Very old, from the Cold War era.</p> <p>Dear organisers, dear participants of the Lennart Meri security conference!</p> <p>This magnificent week is almost over. It's been a great week for Estonia – a "security Woodstock", as defined by Toomas Hendrik Ilves. And as always with festivals, the best comes last, to keep our attention and make us crave for more. And thank you, Riina, for organizing the Lennart Meri Conference for so many years, and also a happy birthday to you!</p> <p>As we sit here in Tallinn and discuss cyber- and conventional security matters, the world around us has not stopped. In Ukraine, during the last week alone, four people, including a 15 year old girl, have been killed in shellings, and another 15 people have been wounded. That's not a frozen conflict – that's war. And while we celebrate the centenary of the Georgian Republic, we also have to accept that for ten years – ten years already – we have not been able to do much about the partial occupation of Georgian territories. We carefully tread the words, calling the evil line of occupation in Georgia something else.</p> <p>When I asked the EU Monitoring Mission in November why exactly we use euphemisms like "Administrative Boundary Line", he could not give me a clear answer. I felt for him, because he had to stick to the agreed vocabulary. He noted that Georgians, though, call it "an occupation line". Why don't we give Georgians at least that little – recognition that part of its territory is occupied, in our every word and gesture? Calling an occupation occupation is something which our political predecessors did not hesitate to do – to the final little detail.</p> <p>We heard today at the conference my Austrian colleague, doctor Alexander Van der Bellen, who had an Estonian passport until he was 15 years old – only then did he realise that his passport was given out by a country that at that moment was not free. But, that passport was recognized.</p> <p>Similarly, some two months ago, I had a chance to board a brand new military transport plane of our eFP framework nation, the United Kingdom. The plane had hardly done a few rounds around the globe. Everything was 21st century, apart from some old-fashioned paper-maps that were probably there only for back-up. So the maps were old. Very old, from the Cold War era.</p>