Estonia has supported Belarus since 2000, and Belarus has been a priority country for Estonian development cooperation since 2011. At the moment, Belarus itself has ruled out development cooperation, which is why we support civil society, the independent media, and the resistance operating in exile. We can also work within the country to a limited extent by continuing ongoing projects, for example in the field of education.

The main areas supported by Estonia in Belarus are civil society empowerment, education, small business development, support of women’s and children’s rights, and environmental cooperation. We have even channeled additional funds to support various scholarship programs, thereby enabling Belarussian youth to receive high-quality education.

In case of governmental changes, the European Union is ready to continue its support for reforms by involving Belarus in the implementation of economic and investment plans of the Eastern Partnership and supporting large-scale infrastructure projects. Also, in case of democratic changes, Estonia is ready to restore its development cooperation with Belarus to the previous extent.

Since 2000, Belarus has been supported by Estonian development cooperation in the amount of nearly four million euros. During this period, 124 projects have been implemented in Belarus. There are currently five ongoing projects.

Global Sustainable Development Goals in Belarus

Priority Areas of Estonian Development Cooperation in Belarus

  • Development of democracy – supporting free media in exile and critical thinking; developing journalistic responsibility and know-how, including supporting the recognition and publicizing of manipulative activities and disinformation used in information warfare.
  • Development in the field of education – making education more accessible and raising the quality of education, including vocational education, based on Estonian experience.
  • Support for entrepreneurship – supporting the development of small businesses, including introducing the principles of creating start-ups and involving women and young people in entrepreneurship.

Relevant Documents

Ongoing projects in Belarus

Project Project Dates Project Implementer
A better future for Brest and Brest region women in Belarus by developing their entrepreneurial skills 01.09.2021–31.08.2022 Eesti Naisuurimus- ja Teabekeskus
Supporting Independent Media in Belarus 01.12.2020–30.11.2022 ESTDEV
Strengthening Democratic Processes, Rule of Law and Good Governance in Eastern Partnership Countries 01.04.2018–31.12.2022 ESTDEV
Development of Internet marketing for small businesses in Belarus 01.09.2021–31.03.2023 SA Poliitikauuringute Keskus PRAXIS
Raising civil society awareness through e-learning and online workshops 01.01.2021–30.08.2023 Tartu Ülikool