Flemish PM resumes Nordic digitalisation drive in Estonia and Finland

Flemish premier Jan Jambon (nationalist) leaves for a two-day visit to Estonia and Finland today. The visit is part of the Flemish government's northern strategy and Flemish efforts to connect with countries in northern Europe. Mr Jambon has visited all the countries covered by the strategy bar Latvia, Estonia and Finland, but this he is now putting right.

Mr Jambon lands in Tallinn (Estonia) on Sunday night. The Flemish leader, who doubles as the Flemish minister for digitalisation, wants to know more about how Estonia, a country known as a pioneer in e-governance, deals with digital services for its citizens and businesses.  He will be visiting the University of Tartu, where he will learn more about the digitalisation of Estonian society. 

A meeting with the Estonian business minister Kristjan Järvan and talks on digitalising cultural heritage with culture minister Piret Hartman are also scheduled. The premier will also visit mobility platform BOLT that operates in Brussels, Namur and Dinant in Belgium.

Given the proximity to Russia, in Estonia the conflict with Ukraine is never far away. During a meeting with Estonian prime minister Kaja Kallas and a visit to the Estonian Development Centre, the war, the Russian threat and the consequences for Estonia will discussed. 

On Monday evening, the Flemish delegation travels to the Finnish capital Helsinki. Besides green transition and innovation, the trip to Finland also focuses on digitalisation, trade and academic cooperation.

On Tuesday, meetings with Finnish transport minister Timo Harakka and the secretary of state for economic affairs Ann-Mari Kemell are planned. 
Mr Jambon will also visit the Finnish innovation fund Sitra, paper company Stora Enso and technology company Nokia.

The Flemish leader is teaming up with the rectors of Helsinki and Aalto universities for a seminar on the ecosystem around universities.

'The Quiet Parade', an exhibition by Flemish artist Hans Op de Beeck, at the Amos Rex Museum will be the capstone of the Finnish visit for PM Jambon, who also doubles as Flemish culture minister. In Helsinki, the artist is presenting a Gesamtkunstwerk of 24 sculptures, a soundscape and a video artwork.

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