TALLINN – Estonia and Turkey remain strong allies, it was noted during bilateral video consultations held between the foreign ministries of the two countries on Friday.
The Estonian delegation to the consultations was headed by the ministry's deputy secretary general for European affairs, Mart Volmer, and the Turkish delegation by deputy minister of foreign affairs Faruk Kaymakci, spokespeople for the Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.
Volmer stressed that Estonia highly values the close cooperation of the two countries, both bilaterally and multilaterally as allies in NATO.
"The unity in NATO is of utmost importance for us. We truly appreciate Turkey's efforts in facing the security challenges in our region. I am also pleased that we have Turkey as a member nation in the NATO cyber defense center in Tallinn," he said.
"Trade relations between Estonia and Turkey are active. Once strict restrictions are lifted, we would like to welcome the Turkish trade minister in Estonia to showcase our investment environment. Turkey has always been an attractive destination for Estonian tourists. We hope that the situation with the pandemic will improve very soon and we can recover our old ties in this sector. I am also glad that as many as 2,953 Turkish citizens have become e-residents," Volmer said according to the spokespeople.
Volmer and Kaymakci discussed at length the relations of the European Union and Turkey in light of the upcoming European Council in March, where the agenda includes relations with Turkey.
"Estonia appreciates Turkey's goal of closer relations with the European Union in various fields and continuing cooperation on migration," Volmer said. "It is in our mutual interest to deepen our partnership, strategically and economically, and this is best achieved through the enlargement framework," he added.
The consultations also covered the situation in the Eastern Mediterranean. Volmer and Kaymakci also talked about issues related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The consultations included a separate meeting with Jonatan Vseviov, the secretary general of the Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, covering Turkey's activities in the region and relations with Russia.