Video: Political debate on the future of Estonia

The only pre-election public debate in English took place on 28 February at the Club of Different Rooms in Tallinn’s Telliskivi Creative City; the debate, ahead of the Estonian general election on 5 March, was organised by Estonishing Evenings, Telliskivi Creative City and Estonian World and seven major political parties were represented.

On 5 March, Estonian citizens went to the polls to elect the country’s next parliament.

While non-citizens cannot participate in the parliamentary election in Estonia, there are many who would like to get an overview of the Estonian political landscape and different parties’ views on health care, education, economics, environment, immigration, foreign policy, security – and other matters.

The reasons differ – there are expats who are married to Estonian citizens, work here for long term or are contemplating to settle here in future.

The future of Estonia

To give as many people as possible a chance to participate in a pre-election discourse, Estonishing Evenings, the Telliskivi Creative City and Estonian World hosted a public debate at the Club of Different Rooms on 28 February at 7:00 PM with candidates from the seven major political parties. The debate was held in English and covered topics that are relevant to the future of Estonia.

The Future of Estonia debate in 2023.

The debaters were Tanel Kiik (the Centre Party), a former social affairs minister and currently a deputy mayor of Tallinn; Andres Sutt (the Reform Party), a former IT minister and currently an MP; Lea Danilson-Järg (Isamaa), the justice minister; Natalie Mets (Social Democrats), an adviser at Tallinn city government; Margot Roose (Estonia 200), a climate activist; Elar Niglas (EKRE); Kätlin Kuldmaa (Right-wingers), a teacher in Narva.

The debate was moderated by Joao Rei, a Tallinn-based Portuguese expat and communication expert.

Joao Rei.

The Estonishing Evenings series runs English-speaking events that host different speakers expressing their viewpoints and experiences on hot topics and matters concerning both the locals and non-natives living in Estonia. Since 2017, it has hosted over 35 events, attended by over 3,000 people from 80 different countries.

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