Russian-language TV channels plan cooperation

Estonian Public Broadcasting (ERR) and Latvian Public Service Television (LTV) concluded a cooperative agreement on March 31 to work together towards implementing the collaborating activities to develop Russian-language TV channels in both countries.

Both channels will be independent in their program selection, with focus on local life. However, common interests will be looked for in the areas where co-operation could lead to achieving better results and help save money.

“It goes without saying that the information field that originates from Russia and is created by the Russian-language media in Estonia, Latvia and other Eastern and Central European countries, needs balancing,” said Margus Allikmaa, ERR’s chairman of the board.

“Russian-speaking population in these countries deserves quality journalism that is based on a variety of sources. They also deserve TV programs, which are more closely connected to the local life. Estonia has decided to launch its own Russian-language TV channel and Latvia now has plans to do the same. As the Estonian and Latvian public broadcasting organisations share common objectives, all kind of cooperation that would help to improve the quality of the Russian-language information field, is justified and reasoned.” he said.

The cooperative agreement offers both broadcasters an opportunity to exchange programs and films, train employees and market their channels.

“We’re pleased that we agreed on such important issues as content production and purchasing, as well as personnel training,” said Latvian Public Broadcast’s Chairman of the Board Ivars Belte, adding that the unifying factor in both channels are a common mission and values.

Latvia’s National Electronic Mass Media Council (NEPLP) only made the decision to create a third LTV channel on March 19. It will launch next year.

The launch of ERR’s Russian-language TV channel is scheduled for the end of September.

Source: ERR News

Businessman: Estonia is a donor of rich countries

Commenting the recent report by CEED, businessman Indrek Neivelt writes that Estonia’s problem is that it is not receiving assistance from, but contributes to richer countries.

„We are a donor for richer countries,” Neivelt wrote in his blog after the CEED institute published its report “A one-way ticket? Migration in Europe from the perspective of CEE countries” which shows that 5.7 percent of the Estonian population have left Estonia mainly to „Old Europe” in the last decade.

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Russian, Belorussian opposition launching TV channel in Estonia

Russian and Belorussian opposition leaders are set to launch a Russian-language TV channel in Estonia, tasked with fighting against Kremlin propaganda in Eastern Europe.

The station will initially air online three times a week, but is planning to expand in April, Delfi reported.

The station is being bankrolled by the Danish government’s MyMedia program.

“Aru.tv is aimed at people in Russia and the Russian-speaking populations of the Baltic nations, Ukraine and Belarus. The main goal of the people behind the project is to offer propaganda-free information,” Pavel Morozov, one of the founders of the station, said. It is his second attempt at such an idea.

Artemy Troitsky, a Russian music critic who recently moved to Tallinn due to his anti-Kremlin views, is also heavily involved.

ERR, the public broadcaster, has unveiled plans for its own Russian-language television station, which should launch in September.

Source: ERR News via Estonian Review

E-residency most popular among Finns and Russians

As of mid-January, Estonia had issued e-residency to 463 of the 650 applicants. The number of e-residents should be above 500 by now.

Estonian interior minister Hanno Pevkur said that the largest number of new e-residents came from Finland (239), followed by Russia (118), Latvia (39), the US (36) and the UK (24).

“We have also received applications from Venezuela, Sri Lanka and Mexico. It has gone rather well. Once we start to issue the digital ID cards in embassies, the number should increase much faster,” he said.

People who wish to apply for e-residency must currently travel to Estonia for a short period of time.

Source: ERR News via Estonian Review

Lithuania asks World Bank to reclassify Baltic states as developed countries

Lithuania’s Finance Minister Rimantas Šadžius has once again called upon the World Bank’s president to upgrade the status of the three Baltic states in this institution from emerging to developed countries.

Since the restoration of independence in the early 1990s, the World Bank had been a steady and important supporter of the efforts made by Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia in order to reorganize and strengthen the region in economic and political terms, the minister said at a meeting in Helsinki on Wednesday.

Read more from Delfi.lt

Russian customs confiscates food on border

Russian authorities confiscate tens or hundreds of kilograms of food each day at the Ivangorod border checkpoint, just across the river from Narva, a Russian site reported.

Rosselkhoznadzor, the federal veterinary and phytosanitary surveillance board, confiscated 31 kilograms of dairy products, 27 kg of cheese and 25 kg of sausages from one car alone at the beginning of the week, 47news.ru reported.

The next day authorities found 174 kilograms of meat and dairy products from one vehicle and 36 kg of meat products from a second car.

All food was sent back to Estonia.

Narva serves as a economic out post for the West. Last summer Russian flocked to Narva, with even bus tours from St. Petersburg organized, to shop for food in Narva, after Russia banned all food imports from Western nations.

A few months later Narva residents flocked to Russia to buy consumer goods as the ruble plummeted.

Source: ERR News

New Nordic Country – Reform Party’s idea for Estonia’s new vision

Estonia must become a New Nordic Country, ie a world leader in terms of personal and economic freedoms, a country with a Nordic standard of living and level of safety, while being socially and technologically more dynamic and flexible than the “old” Nordic countries, Prime Minister Taavi Roivas said at the Reform Party convention on Saturday.

“Our vision of Estonia – a New Nordic Country – is a state well protected, economically successful, ensuring equal opportunities, valuing the family and championing European values. New Nordic Country is the big narrative for Estonia – a better protected, richer and growing nation,” Roivas said.

“We have quite good prerequisites to make it – already now Estonia is in the absolute top globally in many areas,” Roivas said, naming good education levels of the population, good business climate and low public debt as prerequisites for economic growth.

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