News

Kontaveit reaches quarterfinals in Moscow

17.10.18 ... Estonia's top tennis player Anett Kontaveit (WTA 21) has reached the quarterfinals in the VTB Kremlin Cup, defeating France's Kristina Mladenovic (WTA 42) 6:2, 7:6 (3) in the second round.

Ratas: Opportunities presented by AI, data economy must be put to good use

17.10.18 ... Prime Minister Jüri Ratas and Minister of Entrepreneurship and Information Technology Rene Tammist (SDE) on Tuesday discussed artificial intelligence (AI), data and trade with heads of delegations at the 2018 Tallinn Digital Summit, concluding that states should make better use of the opportunities offered by AI and the data economy.

Jaak Jõerüüt: Political diplomatic appointments would be catastrophic

17.10.18 ... Former ambassador Jaak Jõerüüt is of the opinion that career diplomacy is completely normal, and that if diplomatic appointments became political, it would lead to catastrophe.

Conscript dies following sudden serious illness

17.10.18 ... A conscript from the 1st Infantry Brigade of the Estonian Defence Forces (EDF) died in hospital on Tuesday following a sudden serious illness.

Riigikogu board endorses changes to committee lineups

16.10.18 ... The Board of the Riigikogu on Tuesday approved changes to the lineups of four Riigikogu committees.

World Cleanup Day participant totals increase to 17 million

16.10.18 ... One month following the first ever World Cleanup Day (WCD), the official number of participants in the world's largest coordinated civic clean-up event has increased to 17 million participants.

Eight EU states push for sanctions for cyber-attackers

16.10.18 ... Eight EU member states, including the UK and the Baltic countries, are pushing the bloc to impose sanctions on cyber-attackers as Europe seeks to strengthen its electronic defences.

Ministry of Social Affairs favours year-round summer time

16.10.18 ... The Ministry of Social Affairs supports draft legislation by the European Commission which seeks to stop switching between summer and winter time in the EU, noting that it would be more beneficial to people's sleep schedules to commit to year-round summer time.

Mikser attends Foreign Affairs Council, Eastern Partnership meeting

16.10.18 ... Minister of Foreign Affairs Sven Mikser (SDE) on Monday attended a meeting of the EU Foreign Affairs Council in Luxembourg, which was followed by a meeting with EU foreign ministers' counterparts from the Eastern Partnership countries.

Moonika Helme, not Saarso, EKRE's top candidate in western counties

16.10.18 ... Despite losing in the party's internal elections to Mart Saarso, Tallinn City Council member Moonika Helme will head into the 2019 Riigikogu elections as the top Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE) candidate in the electoral district of Lääne, Hiiu and Saare Counties.

Paper: Cause of deadly Kakumäe gas leak points toward chimney

16.10.18 ... While the investigation into what caused a gas leak that proved deadly for two children in their family home in the Kakumäe neighbourhood of Tallinn's Haabersti District on Saturday night, questions arise regarding why an exhaust pipe connected to the gas supply system had been detached from the house.

Kontaveit defeats Potapova in opening round in Moscow

16.10.18 ... Returning from a week-long injury break, Estonia's top-ranked tennis player Anett Kontaveit (WTA 21) advanced from the opening round of the VTB Kremlin Cup in Moscow after narrowly beating Russia's Anastasia Potapova (WTA 93) on Monday, daily Postimees reports.

Reduction in central government jobs continues more slowly over past year

15.10.18 ... The number of central government jobs, which has seen a sharp decrease in Estonia since 2015, continued to decline over the past year as well, albeit at a slower pace.

Record, near record high temperatures reached as autumn persists mild

15.10.18 ... The Estonian Weather Service (EWS) registered a high temperature of 19.1C in Viljandi on Friday, 12 October, breaking the previous record high set in 1979 as unseasonably mild weather persists across the country.

More births than deaths registered in Estonia for 5th month in a row

15.10.18 ... The number of births registered in Estonia surpassed the number of deaths for the fifth month in a row in September.

Estonian IT company develops vital info system for Ukraine, Moldova

15.10.18 ... An Estonian IT company has developed a vital security-related information system for Ukraine and Moldova in cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the US Department of State.

Photos, gallery: 2018 Teachers of the Year announced at ceremony in Tallinn

15.10.18 ... For the 14th time, the Ministry of Education and Research recognised Estonia's best teachers, students and supporters of education, crowning Teachers of the Year in a total of 11 categories. Ülo Vooglaid was also the first recipient of the ministry's Lifetime Achievement Award.

Digest: Why Estonia's contributions in Africa continue to make sense

15.10.18 ... Foreign news editor at daily Postimees, Martin Kutti writes in a comment for his paper why Estonia should continue to contribute to international efforts in Africa's Sahel zone. Kutti accompanied Prime Minister Jüri Ratas (Centre) and Commander of the Estonian Defence Forces (EDF) Gen. Riho Terras to Mali earlier in October.

Deadly gas leak incident extraordinary, say authorities

15.10.18 ... A press conference was held at the Rescue Board on Sunday evening where representatives of the Rescue Board, Police and Border Guard Board (PPA), Prosecutor's Office and Technical Regulatory Authority (TJA) provided an update regarding a gas leak which resulted in the deaths of two children in a Kakumäe, Tallinn home on Saturday.

Tallinn to buy 100 new natural gas buses for €25 million

15.10.18 ... The board of Tallinn's public transportation company Tallinna Linnatranspordi AS (TLT) approved the company's 2019 investment plan, according to which it is to purchase 100 new natural gas buses for €25 million next year.

Ex-US ambassador: Being Trump's personal representative became unacceptable

14.10.18 ... James D. Melville, Jr., who resigned as US Ambassador to Estonia in July before his successor had been appointed and retired after 33 years in the US Foreign Service, said that he had reached the point where he was no longer comfortable serving as the personal representative of current US President Donald Trump, daily Postimees reports.

Ratas: Centre Party will not leave anyone behind

14.10.18 ... In a speech made at the Centre Party congress on Saturday, Prime Minister and party chairman Jüri Ratas said that in order to build a fair country with a strong middle class, the Centre Party will need a convincing win at the upcoming Riigikogu elections next March.

Transport commissioner: Delays with Rail Baltica jeopardise financing

14.10.18 ... European Commissioner for Transport Violeta Bulc has sent a letter to the transport ministers of the Baltics, warning that the Rail Baltica project is in danger of not receiving EU funding due to delays with its implementation.

Two children found dead in Tallinn home, gas poisoning suspected

14.10.18 ... Estonian authorities are suspecting poisoning caused by faulty gas fittings after the bodies of two children aged four and seven were found in a home in the Kakumäe neighbourhood of Tallinn early on Saturday evening. More than ten other houses on the same gas supply line were found to have leaks as well.

Luik meets with Italian Defence Minister, visits EU NAVFOR Med headquarters

13.10.18 ... At a meeting with his Italian colleague Elisabetta Trenta in Rome on Friday, Minister of Defence Jüri Luik (Pro Patria) said that Estonia supports NATO's 360-degree view in which an equal amount of attention is paid to the security needs of each ally.

Party finances: Centre debt twice Reform, many other parties owe nothing

12.10.18 ... Estonia's political parties have published financial information, giving a snapshot of their situation ahead of the March 2019 general election, as reported by daily Postimees.

Andrus Ansip: Coalition minority not like one he headed, causing chaos

12.10.18 ... Former prime minister Andrus Ansip (Reform) says ruling Centre Party has caused a level of tax chaos the next government will have difficulty resolving.

Estonia joins other EU states pressing for cyber-attack sanctions listing

12.10.18 ... Several EU member states including Estonia have called on the EU to add cyber-attacks to its sanctions regime.

President Kaljulaid visits Armenia

12.10.18 ... Kersti Kaljulaid met her Armenian counterpart, Armen Sarkissian, in Yerevan on Thursday, discussing progress in reforms there and closer cooperation between the two countries on digital issues and tourism.

NATO robust, spending to increase, says foreign minister Mikser

12.10.18 ... Foreign Minister Sven Mikser (SDE) was in Brussels on Thursday and met with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg. The pair discussed the next steps in strengthening NATO's deterrence and defence posture, plus cooperation between it and the EU.

New info from Estonia's Danske Bank investigation expected by end of year

12.10.18 ... The criminal investigation into the Estonian branch of Danske Bank is expected to progress enough by the end of the year that the Prosecutor's Office will be able to reveal new information about it, Prosecutor General Lavly Perling confirmed to the Legal Affairs Committee of the Riigikogu.

Estonia announces €40 million procurement for long-range antitank weapons

12.10.18 ... The Estonian Centre for Defence Investment (ECDI) on Friday announced a €40 million euro procurement for the purchase of long-range antitank weapons systems.

Estonian banks cease cooperation with online store selling MMS

12.10.18 ... All Estonian banks have ceased cooperation with the online store Mineral Garden, which sells chlorine dioxide solutions known as Miracle Mineral Supplement, or MMS, as a remedy, according to daily Postimees.

Pension funds not operating to benefit contributors, says ex banker

12.10.18 ... Former Hanspank (now Swedbank) CEO Indrek Neivelt writes in an opinion piece that Estonia's pension funds, with the exception of mutual fund Tuleva, haven't been managed in the interest of their contributors.

Gallery: Minister of Defence visits Estonian troops in Afghanistan

11.10.18 ... Minister of Defence Jüri Luik (Pro Patria) visited Estonian troops serving in the NATO-led Resolute Support Mission. The Estonian infantry platoon deployed to Afghanistan is tasked with offering force protection to allied units advising Afghan security forces.

EKRE member, Riigikogu hopeful Saarso calls Kõlvart 'unfit Asian'

11.10.18 ... Mart Saarso, a member of the Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE) who is running for election to the Riigikogu next March, called Tallinn City Council chairman Mihhail Kõlvart (Centre) an Asian who is unfit for the hall at City Council.

Baltics apply for EU funding for power grid synchronisation

11.10.18 ... The Baltic power transmission system operators (TSOs) on Wednesday submitted an application to the European Commission for EU funding for the first stage of the synchronisation of the Baltic power grids with the Continental European system.

Eesti Päevaleht loses Oudekki Loone Supreme Court appeal

11.10.18 ... Daily Eesti Päevaleht (EPL) has lost an appeal on a lawsuit brought against it by Centre Party MP Oudekki Loone, after the Supreme Court upheld the decision in favour of Ms. Loone and threw out EPL's appeal.

Estonian ministers to meet NATO chief, EDF forces in Italy

11.10.18 ... Minister of Foreign Affairs Sven Mikser (SDE) is to meet NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg in Brussels on Thursday, according to ministry spokespersons.

Reform top party donations

11.10.18 ... Figures for party donations in the third quarter of 2018 (Q3 2018) give an opportunity to compare the finances of all the major political parties in the lead in to the 2019 election. Reform received the highest donations at a reported €120,389, with Isamaa/Pro Patria in second place at €103,170. Top donors included Vjatšeslav Leedo (to Reform) and the Sõnajalg brothers (to both Pro Patria and SDE).

Estonia money laundering risk second lowest in world

11.10.18 ... Estonia ranks second lowest globally in money laundering and terrorism financing risks (ML/TF), according to the Basel Anti-Money Laundering (AML) Index, in spite of the recent Danske Bank money laundering case affecting the Estonian branch of the bank.

Online magazine Estonian World petitions state for funds

11.10.18 ... English-language web magazine Estonian World (EW) has requested support from the state to the tune of €5,000 for the remainder of 2018, and €20,000 for 2019. The alternative, the magazine says, is potential closure of the site.

Estonia 200 on brink of party-hood, Biodiversity looking dead in the water

10.10.18 ... Estonia's two newest would-be political parties need to get moving in finding members, if they're to meet the legal requirement for registration as a party in time for the March 2019 general election.

Prime minister discounts fellow Centre member border militarisation claims

10.10.18 ... Prime Minister Jüri Ratas (Centre) has rebuffed claims from Aivar Riisalu, also of Centre, that Estonia's border is to be remilitarised, including conscript patrols. Mr. Riisalu's statements were met with widespread condemnation from most of the major parties.

Centre wants equitable state and more R&D

10.10.18 ... "A just state for all," (Estonian: ''Õiglane Riik Kõgile,") is the Centre Party's new election slogan, unveiled by party leader and prime minister Jüri Ratas on Wednesday.

Reform will win at home and in Europe, says party leader

10.10.18 ... Reform leader Kaja Kallas is buoyant about the party winning both the general election in March 2019, and the European election in May.

Eesti Energia constructing 7 MW of solar power stations in next year

10.10.18 ... Eesti Energia renewables subsidiary Enefit Green is building 7 MW capacity of solar power plants across Estonia over the next year, the company has announced, investing €5 million on solar energy development in the process.

Riisalu introduces militarised border as Centre promise, sparks criticism

10.10.18 ... Aivar Riisalu, who is in charge of compiling the chapter on national defence in the Centre Party's party platform ahead of the 2019 Riigikogu elections, told ERR on Monday that the party's central promise in that area will be the restoration of militarised border patrol utilising conscripts fresh out of basic training. The announcement sparked widespread criticism.

Parties skeptical of Pro Patria's plan to increase defence spending to 2.5%

10.10.18 ... As part of its party platform ahead of the 2019 Riigikogu elections, the Pro Patria Party plans to promise increasing defence spending in Estonia from 2.16% to 2.5% of the GDP. Other parties, however, are skeptical of the idea.

USAID analysis: Attacks on civil society organisations on rise in Estonia

10.10.18 ... The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has identified the annual civil society organisation (CSO) sustainability index for Central and Eastern Europe and Eurasia, and indicates that Estonia's earlier rapid development has halted and attacks on civil society organisations have increased.

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