Finland, Estonia still discussing travel restrictions

The government is still discussing travel restrictions with Finland and Prime Minister Kaja Kallas will raise the topic on her visit to Helsinki on Friday.

Undersecretary for European Affairs Märt Volmer told ERR on Tuesday the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Social Affairs have been in constant communication with their Finnish counterparts. The Estonian Embassy in Helsinki has also been working on the topic and there is a COVID-19 co-operation working group which meets once a week.

Volmer said Kallas will also address these issues on her visit: "Travel restrictions are definitely among the topics for discussion. Information will be exchanged and it will be explained what the Estonian side can do to change the situation through additional confidence measures."

He added: "The proposals are complex and concern different agencies in both countries. It will take time to discuss them. Unfortunately, the level of spread of the Estonian infection has increased."

Volmer confirmed that the Estonian authorities are working to get Finland to ease the current entry restrictions by February 25.

Finland's current rate of infection is 97 per 100,000 inhabitants while Estonia's is over 600.

Earlier this year Finland introduced restrictions limiting entry to only essential workers from Estonia. Thousands of Estonians live and work in Finland, regularly traveling between the two countries.


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Editor: Helen Wright

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