On February 5th, Estonia Business Forum, themed "Building Stronger Technological Collaboration for Economic and Trade Prosperity", and "Happy Chinese New Year 2018 - Beijing week" opened in Mektory of Tallinn University of Technology in Tallinn, the capital of Estonia. Among the participants and speakers include Mr. Aivar Riisalu, Deputy Mayor of the Tallinn City Government, Mr. Lin Xiangyang, Deputy Secretary General of Beijing Municipal People’s Government, Mr. Mait Palts, Director-General of the Estonian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ECCI), Mr. Wang Chaoying, Deputy Director-General of China Council for Promoting International Trade (CCPIT) Beijing, and Mr. Wu Yan, Economic and Commercial Counsellor of Chinese Embassy in Estonia. During the forum, Mr. Lin Xiangyang and Mr. Aivar Riisalu witnessed the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) by CCPIT Beijing and ECCI.
In his speech, Mr. Aivar Riisalu pointed out that Tallinn is known for being "innovative, green and busy", and leads in digital city, e-services and internet application in Estonia. He hoped that China will continue to work with Estonia in areas including culture, education, economic development, digital collaboration and e-commerce, commenting that Chinese companies can leverage the unique location of Estonia to tap EU markets.
Entrusted by Beijing Mayor Chen Jining, Mr. Lin Xiangyang spoke on behalf of Beijing Municipal Government and extended his sincere congratulations on the opening of "Happy Chinese New Year 2018 - Beijing week" in Tallinn as Chinese New Year and the 100th anniversary of the Republic of Estonia would soon approach. He shared the strategic positioning of Beijing as the country's political center, cultural center, center for international exchanges and center for scientific and technological innovation (“four centers”), which coincided with Tallinn's positioning in Estonia – center of industry, technology and culture. He commented that Beijing and Tallinn have many opportunities to work together, and proposed to enhance the collaboration platform, strengthen collaboration in the area of culture and broaden areas of collaboration between the two cities. The stronger the relationship, the more benefits would be brought to people in both China and Estonia.
Mr. Wang Chaoying represented CCPIT Beijing to discuss how the Belt and Road Initiative could be leveraged to build stronger collaboration and bring benefits. He introduced the function and platform of CCPIT Beijing and gave three suggestions to the trade collaboration between Beijing and Estonia. First, an information sharing mechanism should be established to exchange information and facilitate cooperation among companies. Second, companies should be encouraged to participate in exhibitions and trade fairs. For example, CCPIT Beijing will invite chambers of commerce and enterprises of Estonia to its various exhibitions and use its diverse platforms. Third, chambers of commerce and associations in both countries should be driven to facilitate trade cooperation through the "Internet + Trade" program.
The forum was jointly hosted by the municipal government of Beijing and Tallinn, and organized by CCPIT Beijing, Beijing Municipal Commission of Science & Technology (BMCST) and ECCI. BMCST shared the development of technological innovation in Beijing, followed by introduction of cooperation programs by five companies from China and two companies from Estonia. Besides, more than 40 Estonian entrepreneurs from technology, energy, environmental protection, real estate and tourism sectors and nearly 30 Beijing entrepreneurs from telecommunications, healthcare, energy and investment sectors exchanged ideas and discussed opportunities to cooperate. Both sides expressed strong willingness to work together and discussed with much enthusiasm. The forum was concluded with a tour of science labs of Tallinn University of Technology for participating Chinese and Estonian government officials and entrepreneurs.