Malta and Estonia to collaborate on Diplomatic Studies
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Malta and Estonia to collaborate on Diplomatic Studies

Reference Number: 21032022, Press Release Issue Date: Mar 21, 2022
Malta and Estonia have signed a bilateral  agreement on collaboration on diplomatic studies between the two countries through which Estonia will offer Maltese students sessions about the Nordic and Baltic states and policies while Malta  will offer Estonian students sessions on the Mediterranean, North Africa and Sahel, when Foreign and European Affairs Minister Evarist Bartolo presided over the virtual signing of an agreement between the  Mediterranean Academy of Diplomatic Studies and the Estonian School of Diplomacy.

The Mediterranean Academy of Diplomacy has agreed with the proposal of the Estonian School of Diplomacy  that eventually Malta and Estonia could also work jointly on projects through EU Funding. The signing of this agreement coincided with the 30th anniversary of the establishing of the bilateral relations between Malta and Estonia.

Minister Evarist Bartolo welcomed this agreement and said that while we are indeed living in very difficult, dark times, this initiative provides hope and faith between two small states in strategic regions.

‘In Malta we have both Russian and Ukrainian communities and we uphold social peace among the communities as we try to keep hate speech and racial incitement at bay,’ said Minister Bartolo emphasizing that  both Malta and Estonia have a role to play together to promote and build security in Europe and academics can extend their support on the matter too.

Minister Bartolo said that the European security architecture is now being challenged, a new world disorder is now emerging, where might is right.

‘We have unfortunately not learnt from the past but have chosen the path of extinction. If diplomacy is not about empathy and understanding each other’s culture, than what is it for? It calls for making an effort to understand each other and look in the eyes of our enemy if we hope that this world will have a future.’

Minister Bartolo called on the importance of trying to find compromises, without imposing these on the defeated, but where both sides emerge as sovereign and have free choice. Compromises may be unwanted but the alternative is worse. As small states we have an important role to play. The more we are different in terms of our geographical characteristics, the more reason we have to join up and counter our insularity and inward looking perspectives.

Minister Bartolo appealed to MEDAC and the Estonian School of Diplomacy to keep reaching out to similar academic institutions to build a network of understanding especially with those in small states.

The signing of the agreement was also attended by the Estonian Ambassador to Malta, Paul Teesalu, Malta’s Ambassador to Estonia and Finland, Kenneth Vella and Prof. Godfrey Pirotta, MEDAC Chairman.

Ambassador Teesalu said that this collaboration between Estonia on the eastern shore of the Baltic Sea and Malta in the centre of the Mediterranean was significant considering the challenges shared by the two small countries. A lot has already been achieved but there is more room for bilateral cooperation. 
Ambassador Kenneth Vella said that the agreement signed between MEDAC and the Estonian School of Diplomacy does not only complement  initiatives in the field of education but will also give the opportunity to both entities to collaborate in the future and to share their good practices in various areas and in the training of  students from both countries.

Mr Ekke Nomm, Estonian School for Diplomacy Director said this collaboration augurs for more joint projects and initiatives in both Malta and Estonia and hoped that the calamity of the current war ended sooner.

Prof. Stephen Calleja, MEDAC Director said MEDAC has in the last 30 years welcomed 850 foreign students coming mainly from the Mashreq/Maghreb region, Sub-Saharan Africa, the Southern Mediterranean, Estonia, the Baltics and the Caucasus, amongst others.