ICDS’ Riina Kaljurand: Germany increasingly more important to Estonia following Brexit
The United Kingdom leaving the European Union meant that Estonia was losing an important partner, ICDS research fellow and director of the Lennart Meri Conference, Riina Kaljurand, said in ETV’s international politics program “Välisilm” on Monday.
Kaljurand, who works with Tallinn’s International Centre for Defence and Security (ICDS), said that Estonia would lose an important partner in matters like sanctions against Russia, liberal economic policy, and the state’s role in private enterprise. Also, the UK had been an important balancing element between the northern and southern member states of the EU.
At the same time, the United Kingdom would still remain an important country in Europe, Kaljurand said, pointing out that right after the Brexit referendum, the country had assured in particular the Baltic states that its commitment to European security and NATO would remain.
Estonia’s instinctive approach would now be to try and increase its cooperation with Germany, Kaljurand said. Naturally also with France, but Germany seemed a very logical first choice, as it was a Baltic Sea country as well and, next to the UK and France, one of three allies in the area with a powerful military.