Minister of Foreign Affairs Margus Tsahkna (Eesti 200) on Tuesday opened a bridge in Ukraine which has been rebuilt with Estonia's support after it was partially destroyed in March 2022.
Tsahkna attended the Malyn Bridge ceremony in Zhytomyr Oblast, the region in central Ukraine that Estonia has pledged to rebuild.
Estonia contributed €1 million to the project, a third of the total cost.
On March 6, 2022, Russian forces bombed the area, destroying the Malyn Bridge which links two parts of the city.
The foreign minister said reconstructing the bridge is "crucial for the local community" and a "symbolic step" that shows Estonia's determination to support reconstruction efforts.
"We are still here for the Ukrainians with economic assistance, military support and necessary skills to make sure people can return to their normal lives as soon as possible and Ukraine becomes a member of the European Union. Ukraine's reconstruction will take decades and it is all the more reason for us to do it consistently," Tsahkna said.
Estonia's part of the reconstruction was carried out by the Estonian Centre for International Development (ESTDEV) with the company Stricto Project of bridge expert Andreas Papp.
"It was less than a year from the launch of the bridge project until its completion and it was completed with our excellent partners in Ukraine," Andrea Kivi, acting executive director of ESTDEV, said.
"The bridge symbolizes our faith in the future of Ukraine and it signifies the strong cooperation between our two countries."
Tsahkna attended the EU foreign ministers meeting in Kyiv on Monday and also met with Ukraine's Prosecutor General Andriy Kostin, Infrastructure Minister Oleksandr Kurakov and the parliament's human rights ombudsman Dmytro Lubinets.
Ukraine has asked countries to choose a region to support with their reconstruction efforts and Estonia selected Zhytomyr Oblast in May 2022.
A new kindergarten has already been opened with Estonia's assistance.
Editor: Helen Wright