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Estonia Called On Asian Countries to Fight Cybercrime


No. 203 -E

At the meeting of the foreign ministers of the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) in Budapest, Foreign Minister Urmas Paet called on Asian countries to strengthen their co-operation in fighting cybercrime and create the legal framework for doing so.

Paet asserted that Estonia’s goal is the universal implementation of the Council of Europe’s Convention on Cybercrime. Currently the only Asian signatory of the convention is Japan. “However, several other Asian countries have started domestic preparations for bringing their legislation in line with the treaty. This is the only way we will achieve unified standards that will help us be successful in fighting cross-border cyber attacks, which become more complicated all the time,” he said.

“The cyber attack we experienced four years ago gave Estonia a push to defend its cyber security more vigorously than before and showed us that cyber threats are not just virtual, but very real and damaging,” Paet stated.

At the meeting of European and Asian foreign ministers, where the countries represented make up over half the world’s population and over 60% of world trade, the Estonian foreign minister also addressed new security threats like energy and food security, water management, and piracy.

ASEM is a vital forum for dialogue between the European Union and Asia that was created on the initiative of Singapore. The Asia-Europe Meeting was officially established in 1996. ASEM has 48 members. In addition to the 27 European Union member states, the other members of ASEM are China, Japan, the Republic of Korea, India, Pakistan, Mongolia, Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Cambodia, the Philippines, Singapore, Vietnam, Burma/Myanmar, Laos, Brunei, and the most recent members that joined in 2010—Australia, New Zealand, and Russia.

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