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Estonia Places Importance on Firmly Establishing Free Society in Tunisia


No. 70-E

At his meeting today with Speaker of the Tunisian Parliament Mustapha Ben Jaafer, Foreign Minister Urmas Paet said that Estonia supports firmly establishing democratic processes and developing rule of law in Tunisia. “After the ‘Jasmine Revolution’ that took place in Tunisia over a year ago and became the starting point of the Arab Spring, Tunisia has set its sights on democracy and carrying out reforms. Estonia is prepared to support Tunisia in this process by sharing its own reform experiences,” said Paet. “We are also interested in intensifying economic relations and bilateral co-operation in general. There are good opportunities in the information technology and e-governance sectors,” he added.

At his meeting with Tunisian Foreign Minister Rafik Abdessalem, Paet noted that direct contacts between business organisations would help to build up economic relations between Estonia and Tunisia. He added that Tunisia, as an important tourism destination, could be totally visa-free for Estonian citizens. “Currently only those travelling with a tourism group can enter Tunisia without a visa,” he added. 

Paet confirmed Estonia’s readiness to share its experiences with e-governance and various public sector e-services with Tunisia.

While discussing Tunisia-European Union relations, Paet said that both Estonia and the European Union recognise that among southern partners, Tunisia has been the quickest in its transition to an open society. “We support making progress in European Union free trade agreement talks with Tunisia, which would help Tunisia enter European Union markets, create new jobs, and ensure greater support for reforms,” said the Estonian foreign minister.

At their meeting, Paet and Abdessalem also spoke about developments in North Africa, particularly in Libya, Egypt, Syria and Iran.


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