An honorary consul's office in Cork city, Ireland, has opened, the Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs says.
Local businessman Neil Kenefick has been named honorary consul, while Estonia's ambassador to Ireland, Aino Lepik von Wirén, said of the appointment that: "Neil Kenefick's long-term experience in running his company, his contacts network in Cork and Ireland in general, as well as his personal business ties with Estonia, are good preconditions for developing economic relations between Estonia and Ireland and increasing tourism and investments between Estonia and Ireland."
Opening an honorary consul's office in the Republic of Ireland's second city, at least in terms of population, is a reported as a welcome step in strengthening the bilateral relations of the two countries.
Around 3,000 Estonian citizens live in Ireland, the ministry added, and the new office will make it easier to provide consular services to Estonian citizens in the region – which will cover the counties Clare, Cork, Kerry, Limerick, Tipperary and Waterford.
Ambassador Lepik von Wirén and Undersecretary for Legal and Consular Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Erki Kodar attended the opening ceremony, along with Deputy Mayor of Cork Des Cahill, businessman and former Center MP Imre Sooäär and representatives of the network of Cork's honorary consuls, Irish companies and the local Estonian community.
Erki Kodar said: "By adding an honorary consul in Cork, we are expanding the reach of our network of honorary consuls, which helps us to improve the provision of consular services to our citizens abroad and work towards practical cooperation between the entrepreneurs of Estonia and Ireland."
"Every new honorary consul expands Estonia's diplomatic reach worldwide and increases our influence and network. Considering the size of the Estonian community in Ireland, the honorary consul will help us provide more efficient assistance to our citizens," he went on, according to a ministry press release.
Editor: Andrew Whyte