ESTDEV in the Eastern Partnership and the Balkan States

As of 1 July 2021, ESTDEV was implementing a total of 11 projects with a combined budget of 7.7 million euros, of which 1.33 million euros (17%) was Estonian bilateral funding. ESTDEV’s first project as a new organisation started on 1 September 2021. The project is funded by the Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the U.S. Embassy, with the aim of supporting digital reforms in Skopje, North Macedonia. In addition to Estonia, the largest (co)financiers were the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the European Commission, and the United Nations Organization for Project Services (UNOPS).

It has long been an important part of Estonia’s foreign policy to support the European Union’s Eastern Partners. Estonia has encouraged the Eastern Partners’ right to make their own foreign policy choices, defended the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the partners and promoted their integration into the European Union. Estonia’s primary interest in the European Union’s eastern neighbourhood is to promote a secure and economically successful region based on the rule of law and its gradual integration into the EU. Estonia is ready to continue to contribute to the achievement of the Eastern Partners’ development goals with its know-how and financial resources.

Priorities for the ESTDEV Eastern Partnership Operational Program

Priorities by country

  • Ukraine – supporting good governance, including the fight against corruption and the development of secure e-solutions, strengthening independent media, and promoting small businesses.
  • Georgia – supporting good governance and the development of democracy.
  • Armenia – supporting good governance and the development of democracy.
  • Moldova – supporting good governance and the development of democracy.
  • North Macedonia – boosting digital development.
  • Kyrgyzstan – boosting digital development.
  • Belarus – support for independent media in exile in Belarus and empowering the fight against misinformation; project activities do not support the current administration in Belarus.

Eastern Partnership project portfolio

Upon the accession of the Estonian Eastern Partnership Center to ESTDEV, more than 11 projects in the total amount of 7.7 million euros were transferred to ESTDEV as of 1 July 2021, of which Estonian funding accounted for 1.33 million (17%). As of January 1, 2022, 66 projects in the total amount of 3.7 million euros were added under the administration of ESTDEV, which until then was managed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.


Marika Kundla, Project Specialist
[email protected]