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Information and public services for the Island of Jersey

L'înformâtion et les sèrvices publyis pouor I'Île dé Jèrri

Estonian Ambassador visits Jersey

10 February 2023

Chief Minister and Estonian Ambassador

​The Estonian Ambassador to the United Kingdom, His Excellency Viljar Lubi, completed his visit to Jersey today, Friday 10 February, following two days of engagements in the Island.

Digital Sector

The visit focused primarily around the digital sector and how Jersey can look to further strengthen its digital infrastructure to deliver public services. During his visit, the Ambassador attended three roundtable discussions with government, centred on digital economy/e-gov; digital health; and education.

During these discussions the Ambassador met a wide cross-section of Ministers, including the Chief Minister; the Minister for External Relations; the Minister for Economic Development, Sport, Tourism, and Culture; the Assistant Minister for Economic Development, Sport, Tourism, and Culture; the Minister for Health and Social Services; the Assistant Minister for Health and Social Services; and the Minister for Children and Education.

The Ambassador also spoke with Suzanne Wylie, the CEO of the Government of Jersey, on innovation, digital ID’s, and government services in health and education. 

As part of his programme, the Ambassador attended Digital Jersey’s Annual Review as a keynote speaker as well as meeting with representatives from Jersey Finance. He also had the opportunity to meet with members of the Estonian community in Jersey, supported by Jersey’s Estonian Honorary Consul. 

The Ambassador was hosted at Government House by the Lieutenant Governor, His Excellency Vice Admiral Jerry Kyd CBE, during his stay in the Island. The Bailiff, Sir Timothy Le Cocq, hosted an official dinner for the Ambassador alongside States Members, industry representatives and Digital Jersey board members. 

Ambassador comment

Upon the conclusion of his visit, His Excellency, Viljar Lubi said:

“For about the last ten years, Jersey and Estonia have held conversations about collaboration on digital governance. 

“When the CEO of Digital Jersey, Tony Moretta, invited me to speak at their Annual Review, little did I know that I would be welcomed with such warmth and enthusiasm from the Government of Jersey and industry representatives.

“We now look to push the co-operation between our nations forward”. 

Ministers comment

The Minister for External Relations, Deputy Philip Ozouf, said: “In a post-Brexit world, it has become increasingly important for Jersey to strengthen and deepen our bilateral relationships with like-minded partners across Europe. As a small, innovative country, Estonia enjoys one of the world’s most competitive tax systems and remains a world-leader in the digital sector. There is therefore a strong rationale for forging stronger links between our jurisdictions. 

“Estonia’s expertise in the digital sector provides opportunity for us to further develop our digital infrastructure. Jersey enjoys some of the fastest and most comprehensive broadband cover in the world, but as always there are areas we can and should look to improve in. The discussions we held over the last few days, particularly on e-governance and digital education, have provided valuable insights into the lessons that the Estonian government has learnt building a digital society, and how best to apply that to a Jersey context. 

“Critically as well, is the value that the Estonian diaspora plays in our Island. Jersey is an increasingly diverse community, with over 16% of our population comprising of European nationals. Although our formal relationship with the European Union has changed, our commitment to engaging with our European partners has not. “The Ambassador’s first visit to Jersey marks a renewed phase of our engagement with Estonia, and I hope that this relationship can deepen and diversify in the months and years ahead”.

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