Brief Review of Relations between China and Estonia
2004/05/17

I. Bilateral Political Relations and Important Exchanges

On September 11, 1991, the Communiqué on the Establishment of Diplomatic Relations Between the People's Republic of China and the Republic of Estonia was signed in Tallinn. Since the establishment of diplomatic relations, ties between the two countries have been developing steadily.

Chinese leaders and high officials who visited Estonia successively included:

Vice-Premier Qian Qichen (July 1994), Vice-Premier Li Lanqing (June 1996), State Councillor Li Tieying (August 1996), Vice-Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress Timur Dawamat (September 1997), State Councillor Wu Yi (March 1999), Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress Li Peng (September 2000), President Jiang Zemin (June 2002).

Vice President of the Supreme People’s Procuratorate Zhao Hong (March 2000), Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the National People’s Congress Zeng Jianhui (May 2000), Deputy Director of the State Ethnic Affairs Commission Li Jinyou (June 2001), Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Subcommittee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference Tian Zengpei (September 2001), Deputy Minister of Railways Liu Zhijun (December 2001), Assistant Minister of Foreign Affairs Liu Guchang (April 2002), Deputy Director of the State Audit Office Wang Daocheng (April 2002), President of the Chinese People’s Institute of Foreign Affairs Mei Zhaorong (September 2002).

Estonian leaders who visited China included:

Prime Minister Tiit Vahi, (May 1992), Foreign Minister Velliste (September 1993), President Lennart Meri (June 1994 and March 2001), Parliament Speaker Toomas Savi (January 1998), Foreign Minister Toomas Hendrik Ilves (May 1998) and Minister of Defence Andrus Oovel (June 1998), Minister of Ethnic Affairs Katrin Saks (November 2000) and Minister of Culture Ms. Signe Kivi (May 2002).


II. Bilateral Trade Relations and Economic and Technical Cooperation

Sino-Estonian trade and economic relations have been developing smoothly, based on solid legal foundation. The China-Estonia Joint Commission on Economic and Trade Cooperation is functioning well and four meetings have been held so far.

In recent years, Sino-Estonian trade registered growth in general. According to the Chinese Customs statistics, Sino-Estonian trade volume stood at US$14.68 million in 1998, an increase of 37.7% over the previous year, of which China's import was US$7.76 million while export was US$6.92 million. In 1999, the bilateral trade volume was US$10.39 million, a decrease of 29.2% over the previous year, of which China's import was US$3.16 million and export was US$7.23 million. In 2000, the trade volume between China and Estonia amounted to US$66.89 million, an increase of 543.6% over the previous year, of which China’s import was US$5.1million and export was US$61.79 million. In 2001, China-Estonian trade volume scored US$273.7 million, an increase of 309.2% over year 2002, of which China’s import was US$10.85million and export was US$262.8 million.

China mainly exports to Estonia apparel, shoes and other light industrial and textile products as well as fresh and frozen pork and beef. The major items China imports from Estonia consist of raw materials for paper manufacturing, non-ferrous metals, machinery and electrical products as well as textile products. Currently, there are 12 Chinese enterprises in Estonia with a registered capital of more than US$1 million. They are mainly engaged in commodities wholesale and retail sales, entertainment, restaurants and most of these businesses are being conducted individually or through individual contract.


III. Bilateral Exchanges and Cooperation in Culture, Education, Media and Sports

In 2002, China and Estonia maintain momentum of good cooperation and friendly exchange in the fields of culture, education, media and sports.

From the Chinese side:

On July 16-23, 2002, a team of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army participated in the International Military Sports Triathlon Competition held in Estonia and won the first place in women group, first and second places in women individual, as well as the third place in team score.

On July 22, 2002, the Chinese Water Color Paintings Exhibition opened in the National Library of Estonia.

On August 7-10, 2002, a team from the Shenyang Military Region participated in the Estonia  "ERNA" special forces competition and won first and second places.

On November 15-30, 2002, the Chinese Traditional Painting Exhibition was held in the National Library of Estonia. H.E. Mrs. Cong Jun, Ambassador of China and H.E. Margus Allikmaa, Minister of Culture of Estonia attended the opening ceremony on 15 Nov. 2002.

On November 22-29, 2002, a military sports team of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army participated in the 21st International Military Sports Wrestling Competition.

From the Estonian side:

On April 1-11, H.E. Ms. Signe Kivi, Minister of Culture of Estonia led the Estonian Folk Dance Troupe LEE for a visit to China. Vice Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress Bu He and Vice Minister of Culture of China Ms. Meng Xiaosi held meeting and talk with the Delegation separately. Except Beijing, the Estonian delegation also toured Xi’an and Guangzhou cities. The LEE Troupe put on performances in Beijing, Qingdao and Dalian cities.

On April 19-29, 2002, 6 journalists from the Estonian TV, Kanal 2, Postimees newspaper and Estonian News Agency joined the Baltic Journalist Delegation and paid a visit to China.

On November 10-17, 2002, Mr. Jaak Aaviksoo, Rector of the Tartu University of Estonia, together with Mr. Mart Laidmets, Secretary General of the Estonian Rectors’ Conference, visited China. Mr. Liu Guchang, Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs of China, Su Guang, Deputy Director of the Chinese People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries and responsible officials of the Ministry of Education of China met them separately. Besides, Aaviksoo and Laidmets also toured the Tsinghua University and Hebei University, Beijing Zhong Guanchun Science and Technology Zone and Shanghai City.

At present, 89 Chinese students are studying in the Estonian Business School, 15 in the Concordia University and one in the Tartu University.  Two Estonians are studying in China.


IV.  Important Bilateral Agreements

1.   Joint Communiqué on the Establishment of Diplomatic Relations Between the People's Republic of China and the Republic of Estonia (signed on September 11, 1991)

2.   Joint Declaration of the People's Republic of China and the Republic of Estonia (signed on June 13, 1994)

3.   Agreement on Cooperation in Science and Technology Between the Governments of the People's Republic of China and the Republic of Estonia (signed on April 20, 1992)

4.   Agreement on Cooperation in Economy and Trade Between the Governments of the People's Republic of China and the Republic of Estonia (signed on May 12, 1992)

5.   Agreement on Promotion and Protection of Mutual Investments Between the Governments of the People's Republic of China and the Republic of Estonia (signed on September 2, 1993)  

6.   Agreement Between the Government of the People’s Republic of China and the Government of the Republic of Estonia on Cultural, Educational and Scientific Cooperation (signed on September 3, 1993)

7.   Agreement Between the Government of the People’s Republic of China and the Government of the Republic of Estonia on the Avoidance of Double Taxation and Prevention of Fiscal Evasion with Respect to Taxes on Income (signed on May 12, 1998)

8.   Agreement Between the Government of the People’s Republic of China and the Government of the Republic of Estonia Relating to Civil Air Transport (signed on March 1, 1999)

9.   Treaty between the People's Republic of China and the Republic of Estonia on Mutual Judicial Assistance in Criminal Matters (signed on June 12, 2002)

VI.  Successive Chinese Ambassadors to Estonia
Sun Dadong (August 1993 – May 1998)
Zou Mingrong (August 1998 – October 2001)
Mrs. Cong Jun (December 2001 - July 2003 )
Hong Jiuyin (September 2003- )

Successive Charge d’Affaires and Ambassador of Estonia to China
Andrei Birov Charge d’Affaires  (August 1997 – July 2001)
Ms. Malle Kurbel Charge d’Affaires  (July 2001 – April 2002)
Mait Martinson Ambassador         (April 2002 - )

 

Suggest To A Friend:   
Print