‘Vaccination is our first priority in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. It is important that the Member States of the European Union have common principles with regard to the safety of vaccines,’ Kaja Kallas said.
The Estonian Prime Minister and the Spanish Minister of Foreign Affairs emphasised that in order to restore free movement, there is an urgent need to establish an interoperable framework that allows the mutual recognition of vaccination certificates both within the EU and globally. ‘Estonia is cooperating with global experts within the WHO in order to provide an easy-to-use, secure, and reliable framework,’ Kallas said. She also thanked Spain for the solidarity shown by the Member States of the European Union in distributing an additional 10 million doses of Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine. As a result of the negotiations, Estonia received more than 62,000 doses, which is almost twice the number intended for us on the basis of our population.
The meeting also focused on international defence cooperation and security. According to Kaja Kallas, just as Spain shows solidarity in strengthening the security of the Baltic region by participating in the air security mission in Ämari, Estonia also contributes to increasing stability in Europe’s southern neighbourhood. Estonia and Spain are both participating in missions in Mali. This spring, the Estonian surveillance aircraft will also participate in the joint operation of the Frontex mission in the region of the Canary Islands.
The Estonian Prime Minister emphasised at the meeting that it is also important to develop stability and democracy, as well as increase well-being in Europe’s eastern neighbourhood. ‘It is vital to keep our Eastern partners on the path of reforms and to offer those who are ready a specific European perspective,’ Kallas said.
The 100th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Estonia and Spain also gave impetus to bilateral cooperation. Among other things, the Spanish Minister of Foreign Affairs will participate in the opening ceremony of the exhibition ‘Zuloaga: Soul of Spain’ at the Mikkel Museum.