Estonia Supports Inviting New Members to OECD


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In his meeting with Foreign Minister of Colombia Maria Angela Holguin Cuellar in Bogota, Foreign Minister Urmas Paet said that Estonia supports the enlargement of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and inviting Colombia to participate in accession negotiations. “We feel that all countries that have expressed readiness and fulfil the requirements for members should be invited to accession negotiations,” said the Estonian foreign minister.

Paet said that Estonia would like to appoint an honorary consul to Columbia soon to promote economic and cultural ties and provide consular aid. “We are interested in closer relations with Colombia in the areas of trade, services, and investments,” Paet noted. “The number of Estonian tourists visiting Colombia has also grown,” he added.

At their meeting, the foreign ministers also discussed economic co-operation and trade between European Union countries and Colombia, as well as co-operation opportunities in the area of investments. “We hope that a free trade agreement between the EU and Colombia will soon come into effect. Estonia supported concluding the agreement in June of 2012,” noted Foreign Minister Paet.

Paet stated that Estonia is prepared to introduce its e-solutions to Colombia. “A Colombian delegation is welcome to come to Estonia to become acquainted with e-governance applications,” he added. Colombia is one of the most successful countries in Latin America in the area of IT.

At their meeting, the foreign ministers also discussed cultural co-operation and intensifying cultural relations. “I am pleased that this summer the group Vox Clamantis will have a concert tour here in Colombia. And the works of Colombian jewellery designers were just recently on display in an exhibit at the Estonian Museum of Applied Art and Design,” stated Paet.

In order to promote direct communication between the countries, the foreign ministers signed an agreement for a visa waiver for diplomatic passports between Estonia and Colombia. Estonians can travel to Colombia for tourism without a visa. “We thank Colombia for the unilateral step to give a visa waiver to Estonian citizens in 2008,” said Paet.

The foreign ministers also touched on the peace process in Colombia and developments in Latin America, including the situations in Cuba and Venezuela.

Foreign Minister Paet and Finnish Minister for European Affairs and Foreign Trade Alexander Stubb will continue their joint visit in Mexico tomorrow together with Estonian and Finnish entrepreneurs.




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