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 Eastern Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea and Gulf of Finland, between Latvia and Russia

Geographic Coordinates:

 59 00 N, 26 00 E


 Total: 45,228 sq km
Land: 42,388 sq km
Water: 2,840 sq km

Note: includes 1,520 islands in the Baltic Sea

Area - Comparative:

 Slightly smaller than New Hampshire and Vermont combined

Land Boundaries:

 Total: 633 km
Border countries: Latvia 343 km, Russia 290 km


 3,794 km (Rank: 31)

Maritime Claims:

 Territorial sea: 12 nm
Exclusive economic zone: limits fixed in coordination with neighboring states


 Maritime; wet, moderate winters, cool summers


 Marshy, lowlands; flat in the north, hilly in the south

Elevation Extremes:

 Lowest point: Baltic Sea 0 m
Highest point: Suur Munamagi 318 m

Natural Resources:

 Oil shale, peat, rare earth elements, phosphorite, clay, limestone, sand, dolomite, arable land, sea mud

Land Use:

 Arable land: 12.05%
Permanent crops: 0.35%
Other: 87.6% (2005)

Irrigated Land:

 40 sq km (2008)

Total Renewable Water Resources:

 21.1 cu km (2005)

Freshwater Withdrawal:

 Total: 1.41 cu km/yr (56%/39%/5%)
Per capita: 1,060 cu m/yr (2002)

Natural Hazards:

 Sometimes flooding occurs in the spring

Environment - Current Issues:

 Air polluted with sulfur dioxide from oil-shale burning power plants in northeast; however, the amount of pollutants emitted to the air have fallen steadily, the emissions of 2000 were 80% less than in 1980; the amount of unpurified wastewater discharged to water bodies in 2000 was 1/20 the level of 1980; in connection with the start-up of new water purification plants, the pollution load of wastewater decreased; Estonia has more than 1,400 natural and manmade lakes, the smaller of which in agricultural areas need to be monitored; coastal seawater is polluted in certain locations

Environment - International Agreements:

 Party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulfur 85, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands

Signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Geography - Note:

 The mainland terrain is flat, boggy, and partly wooded; offshore lie more than 1,500 islands

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 Noun: Estonian(s)
Adjective: Estonian

Ethnic Groups:

 Estonian 68.7%, Russian 25.6%, Ukrainian 2.1%, Belarusian 1.2%, Finn 0.8%, other 1.6% (2008 census)


 Estonian (official) 67.3%, Russian 29.7%, other 2.3%, unknown 0.7% (2000 census)


 Evangelical Lutheran 13.6%, Orthodox 12.8%, other Christian (including Methodist, Seventh-Day Adventist, Roman Catholic, Pentecostal) 1.4%, unaffiliated 34.1%, other and unspecified 32%, none 6.1% (2000 census)


 1,282,963 (July 2011 est.)

Age Structure:

 0-14 years: 15.1% (male 99,919/female 94,066)
15-64 years: 67.2% (male 410,132/female 451,736)
65 years and over: 17.7% (male 74,803/female 152,307) (2011 est.)

Median Age:

 Total: 40.5 years
Male: 37 years
Female: 43.9 years (2011 est.)

Population Growth Rate:

 -0.641% (2011 est.)

Birth Rate:

 10.45 births/1,000 population (2011 est.)

Death Rate:

 13.55 deaths/1,000 population (July 2011 est.)

Net Migration Rate:

 -3.31 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2011 est.)


 Urban population: 69% of total population (2010)
Rate of urbanization: 0.1% annual rate of change (2010-15 est.)

Major Cities - Population:

 TALLINN (capital) 399,000 (2009)

Sex Ratio:

 At birth: 1.063 male(s)/female
Under 15 years: 1.06 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 0.91 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.49 male(s)/female
Total population: 0.84 male(s)/female (2011 est.)

Maternal Mortality Rate:

 12 deaths/100,000 live births (2008)

Infant Mortality Rate:

 Total: 7.06 deaths/1,000 live births
Male: 8.21 deaths/1,000 live births
Female: 5.85 deaths/1,000 live births (2011 est.)

Life Expectancy At Birth:

 Total population: 73.33 years
Male: 68.02 years
Female: 78.97 years (2011 est.)

Total Fertility Rate:

 1.44 children born/woman (2011 est.)

Health Expenditures:

 4.3% of GDP (2009)

Physicians Density:

 3.409 physicians/1,000 population (2008)

Hospital Bed Density:

 5.71 beds/1,000 population (2008)

Drinking Water Source:

 Urban: 99% of population
Rural: 97% of population
Total: 98% of population
Urban: 1% of population
Rural: 3% of population
Total: 2% of population (2008)

Sanitation Facility Access:

 Urban: 96% of population
Rural: 94% of population
Total: 95% of population
Urban: 4% of population
Rural: 6% of population
Total: 5% of population (2008)

HIV/AIDS - Adult Prevalence Rate:

 1.2% (2009 est.)

HIV/AIDS - People Living With HIV/AIDS:

 9,900 (2009 est.)

HIV/AIDS - Deaths:

 Fewer than 500 (2009 est.)

Major Infectious Diseases:

 Degree of risk: intermediate
Food or waterborne diseases: bacterial diarrhea
Vectorborne disease: tickborne encephalitis (2009)

Obesity - Adult Prevalence Rate:

 14.4% (2004)

Education Expenditures:

 4.9% of GDP (2007)


 Definition: age 15 and over can read and write
Total population: 99.8%
Male: 99.8%
Female: 99.8% (2000 census)

Average Years of Schooling:

 Total: 16 years
Male: 15 years
Female: 17 years (2008)

Unemployment, Youth Ages 15-24:

 Total: 27.3%
Male: 31.8%
Female: 21.2% (2009)

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Country Name:

 Conventional long form: Republic of Estonia
Conventional short form: Estonia
Local long form: Eesti Vabariik
Local short form: Eesti
Former: Estonian Soviet Socialist Republic

Government Type:

 Parliamentary republic


 Name: Tallinn
Geographic coordinates: 59 26 N, 24 43 E
Time difference: UTC+2 (7 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October

Administrative Divisions:

 15 counties (maakonnad, singular - maakond); Harjumaa (Tallinn), Hiiumaa (Kardla), Ida-Virumaa (Johvi), Jarvamaa (Paide), Jogevamaa (Jogeva), Laanemaa (Haapsalu), Laane-Virumaa (Rakvere), Parnumaa (Parnu), Polvamaa (Polva), Raplamaa (Rapla), Saaremaa (Kuressaare), Tartumaa (Tartu), Valgamaa (Valga), Viljandimaa (Viljandi), Vorumaa (Voru)

Note: counties have the administrative center name following in parentheses


 20 August 1991 (declared); 6 September 1991 (recognized by the Soviet Union)

National Holiday:

 Independence Day, 24 February (1918); note - 24 February 1918 was the date Estonia declared its independence from Soviet Russia and established its statehood; 20 August 1991 was the date it declared its independence from the Soviet Union


 Adopted 28 June 1992

Legal System:

 Civil law system

International Law Organization Participation:

 Accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations; accepts ICCt jurisdiction


 18 years of age; universal for all Estonian citizens

Executive Branch:

 Chief of state: President Toomas Hendrik ILVES (since 9 October 2006)

Head of government: Prime Minister Andrus ANSIP (since 12 April 2005)

Cabinet: Ministers appointed by the prime minister, approved by Parliament

Elections: president elected by Parliament for a five-year term (eligible for a second term); if a candidate does not secure two-thirds of the votes after three rounds of balloting in the Parliament, then an electoral assembly (made up of Parliament plus members of local councils) elects the president, choosing between the two candidates with the largest number of votes; election last held on 29 August 2011 (next to be held in the fall of 2016); prime minister nominated by the president and approved by Parliament

Election results: Toomas Hendrik ILVES reelected president; parliamentary vote - Toomas Hendrik ILVES 73, Indrek TARAND 25

Legislative Branch:

 Unicameral Parliament or Riigikogu (101 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve four-year terms)

Elections: last held on 6 March 2011 (next to be held in March 2015)

Election results: percent of vote by party - Estonian Reform Party 28.6%, Center Party of Estonia 23.3%, Union of Pro Patria and Res Publica 20.5%, Social Democratic Party 17.1%, Estonian Greens 3.8%, Estonian People's Union 2.1%, other 4.6%; seats by party - Estonian Reform Party 33, Center Party 26, Union of Pro Patria and Res Publica 23, Social Democratic Party 19

Judicial Branch:

 Supreme Court (chairman appointed for life by Parliament)

Political Parties and Leaders:

 Center Party of Estonia (Keskerakond) [Edgar SAVISAAR]; Estonian Greens (Rohelised) [Marek STRANDBERG]; Estonian People's Union (Rahvaliit) [Andrus BLOK]; Estonian Reform Party (Reformierakond) [Andrus ANSIP]; Social Democratic Party [Sven MIKSER]; Union of Pro Patria and Res Publica (Isamaa je Res Publica Liit) [Mart LAAR]

International Organization Participation:

 Australia Group, BA, BIS, CBSS, CE, EAPC, EBRD, ECB, EIB, EMU, ESA (cooperating state), EU, FAO, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC, ICRM, IDA, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC, MIGA, NATO, NIB, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OIF (observer), OPCW, OSCE, PCA, Schengen Convention, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNTSO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic Representation in the US:

 Chief of mission: Ambassador Marina KALJURAND
Chancery: 2131 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008
Telephone: [1] (202) 588-0101
FAX: [1] (202) 588-0108
Consulate(s) general: New York

Diplomatic Representation From the US:

 Chief of mission: Ambassador Michael C. POLT
Embassy: Kentmanni 20, 15099 Tallinn
Mailing address: use embassy street address
Telephone: [372] 668-8100
FAX: [372] 668-8265

Flag Description:

 Three equal horizontal bands of blue (top), black, and white; various interpretations are linked to the flag colors; blue represents faith, loyalty, and devotion, while also reminiscent of the sky, sea, and lakes of the country; black symbolizes the soil of the country and the dark past and suffering endured by the Estonian people; white refers to the striving towards enlightenment and virtue, and is the color of birch bark and snow, as well as summer nights illuminated by the midnight sun

National Symbols:

 Barn swallow

National Anthem:

 Name: "Mu isamaa, mu onn ja room" (My Native Land, My Pride and Joy)
Lyrics/music: Johann Voldemar JANNSEN/Fredrik PACIUS

Note: adopted 1920, though banned between 1940 and 1990 under Soviet occupation; the anthem, used in Estonia since 1869, shares the same melody with that of Finland but has different lyrics

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Economy - Overview:

 Estonia, a 2004 European Union entrant, has a modern market-based economy and one of the higher per capita income levels in Central Europe and the Baltic region. Estonia's successive governments have pursued a free market, pro-business economic agenda and have wavered little in their commitment to pro-market reforms. The current government has followed relatively sound fiscal policies that have resulted in balanced budgets and very low public debt. The economy benefits from strong electronics and telecommunications sectors and strong trade ties with Finland, Sweden, and Germany. Tallinn's priority has been to sustain high growth rates - on average 8% per year from 2003 to 2007. Estonia's economy slowed down markedly and fell sharply into recession in mid-2008, primarily as a result of an investment and consumption slump following the bursting of the real estate market bubble. GDP dropped nearly 14% in 2009, among the world's highest rates of contraction. Rising exports to Sweden and Finland lead an economic recovery in 2010, but unemployment stands above 17%. Estonia joined the OECD in December 2010 and adopted the euro in January 2011.

GDP (Purchasing Power Parity):

 $24.69 billion (2010 est.)
$23.95 billion (2009 est.)
$27.81 billion (2008 est.)

Note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP (Official Exchange Rate):

 $19.78 billion (2010 est.)

GDP - Real Growth Rate:

 3.1% (2010 est.)
-13.9% (2009 est.)
-5.1% (2008 est.)

GDP - Per Capita (PPP):

 $19,100 (2010 est.)
$18,400 (2009 est.)
$21,300 (2008 est.)

Note: data are in 2010 US dollars

GDP - Composition By Sector:

 Agriculture: 2.7%
Industry: 29.1%
Services: 68.2% (2010 est.)

Labor Force:

 686,800 (2010 est.)

Labor Force - By Occupation:

 Agriculture: 2.8%
Industry: 22.7%
Services: 74.5% (2008)

Unemployment Rate:

 16.9% (2010 est.)
13.8% (2009 est.)

Population Below Poverty Line:

 19.7% (2008)

Household Income / Consumption By Share:

 Lowest 10%: 2.7%
Highest 10%: 27.7% (2004)

Distribution of Family Income - Gini Index:

 31.4 (2009)
37 (1999)

Investment (Gross Fixed):

 18.6% of GDP (2010 est.)


 Revenues: $7.719 billion
Expenditures: $7.692 billion (2010 est.)

Taxes and Other Revenues:

 39% of GDP (2010 est.)

Budget Surplus / Deficit:

 0.1% of GDP (2010 est.)

Public Debt:

 6.6% of GDP (2010 est.)
7.1% of GDP (2009 est.)

Inflation Rate (Consumer Prices):

 3% (2010 est.)
-0.1% (2009 est.)

Commercial Bank Prime Lending Rate:

 7.759% (31 December 2010 est.)
9.385% (31 December 2009 est.)

Stock of Money:

 $6.106 billion (31 December 2008)
$7.158 billion (31 December 2007)

Stock of Quasi Money:

 $5.478 billion (31 December 2008)
$4.253 billion (31 December 2007)

Stock of Narrow Money:

 $6.614 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
$5.99 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Note: this figure represents the US dollar value of Estonian kroon in circulation prior to Estonia's joining the Economic and Monetary Union (EMU); see entry for the European Union for money supply in the euro area; the European Central Bank (ECB) controls monetary policy for the 17 members of the EMU; individual members of the EMU do not control the quantity of money circulating within their own borders

Stock of Broad Money:

 $11.36 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
$11.7 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Stock of Domestic Credit:

 $18.95 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
$20.91 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Market Value of Publicly Traded Shares:

 $2.26 billion (31 December 2010)
$2.654 billion (31 December 2009)
$1.951 billion (31 December 2008)

Agriculture - Products:

 Grain, potatoes, vegetables; livestock and dairy products; fish


 Engineering, electronics, wood and wood products, textiles; information technology, telecommunications

Industrial Production Growth Rate:

 13.2% (2010 est.)

Electricity - Production:

 8.779 billion kWh (2009 est.)

Electricity - Production By Source:

 Fossil fuel: 99.8%
Hydro: 0.1%
Nuclear: 0%
Other: 0.2% (2001)

Electricity - Consumption:

 7.08 billion kWh (2009 est.)

Electricity - Exports:

 2.943 billion kWh (2009 est.)

Electricity - Imports:

 3.025 billion kWh (2009 est.)

Oil - Production:

 7,642 bbl/day (2010 est.)

Oil - Consumption:

 31,000 bbl/day (2010 est.)

Oil - Exports:

 0 bbl/day (2009 est.)

Oil - Imports:

 28,520 bbl/day (2009 est.)

Oil - Proven Reserves:

 0 bbl (1 January 2011 est.)

Natural Gas - Production:

 0 cu m (2009 est.)

Natural Gas - Consumption:

 1.02 billion cu m (2009 est.)

Natural Gas - Exports:

 0 cu m (2009 est.)

Natural Gas - Imports:

 1.02 billion cu m (2009 est.)

Natural Gas - Proven Reserves:

 0 cu m (1 January 2011 est.)

Current Account Balance:

 $677.8 million (2010 est.)
$893.1 million (2009 est.)


 $11.66 billion (2010 est.)
$9.125 billion (2009 est.)

Exports - Commodities:

 Machinery and electrical equipment 21%, wood and wood products 9%, metals 9%, furniture 7%, vehicles and parts 5%, food products and beverages 4%, textiles 4%, plastics 3%

Exports - Partners:

 Finland 18.5%, Sweden 17%, Russia 10.4%, Latvia 9.8%, Germany 5.7%, Lithuania 5.3% (2010)


 $11.94 billion (2010 est.)
$9.903 billion (2009)

Imports - Commodities:

 Machinery and electrical equipment 22%, mineral fuels 18%, chemical products 3%, foodstuffs 6%, plastics 6%, textiles 5%

Imports - Partners:

 Finland 15.7%, Germany 11.9%, Sweden 11.6%, Latvia 11.5%, Lithuania 8.2%, Poland 6.8%, Russia 4.5% (2010)

Reserves of Foreign Exchange and Gold:

 $2.568 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
$3.981 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Debt - External:

 $24.22 billion (30 June 2011 est.)
$22.03 billion (31 December 2010 est.)

Stock of Direct Foreign Investment - Abroad:

 $6.029 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
$6.618 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Stock of Direct Foreign Investment - At Home:

 $16.39 billion (31 December 2010 est.)
$16.25 billion (31 December 2009 est.)

Exchange Rates:

 Convert Euro to Any Currency

Kroon (EEK) per US dollar -
11.8 (2010)
11.23 (2009)
10.7 (2008)
11.535 (2007)
12.473 (2006)

Note: on 1 January 2011 Estonia adopted the euro as legal tender

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Telephones - Main Lines In Use:

 482,200 (2010)

Telephones - Cellular:

 1.653 million (2010)

Telephone System:

 General assessment: foreign investment in the form of joint business ventures greatly improved telephone service with a wide range of high quality voice, data, and Internet services available

Domestic: substantial fiber-optic cable systems carry telephone, TV, and radio traffic in the digital mode; Internet services are widely available; schools and libraries are connected to the Internet, a large percentage of the population files income-tax returns online, and online voting was used for the first time in the 2005 local elections

International: country code - 372; fiber-optic cables to Finland, Sweden, Latvia, and Russia provide worldwide packet-switched service; 2 international switches are located in Tallinn (2008)

Broadcast Media:

 The publicly-owned broadcaster, Eesti Rahvusringhaaling (ERR), operates 2 television channels; national private TV channels expanding service; a range of channels are aimed at Russian-speaking viewers; high penetration rate for cable TV services with more than half of Estonian households connected; publicly-owned broadcaster, ERR, operates 4 radio networks and there are a growing number of private commercial radio stations broadcasting nationally, regionally, and locally (2008)

Radio Broadcast Stations:

 AM 0, FM 34, shortwave 0 (2009)

Television Broadcast Stations:

 15 (2008)

Internet Country Code:


Internet Hosts:

 729,534 (2010)

Internet Users:

 971,700 (2009)

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 19 (2010)

Airports - With Paved Runways:

 Total: 13
Over 3,047 m: 2
2,438 to 3,047 m: 7
1,524 to 2,437 m: 2
914 to 1,523 m: 2 (2010)

Airports - With Unpaved Runways:

 Total: 6
1,524 to 2,437 m: 2
914 to 1,523 m: 1
Under 914 m: 3 (2010)


 1 (2010)


 Gas 859 km (2010)


 Total: 1,196 km
Broad gauge: 1,196 km 1.520-m and 1.524-m gauge (131 km electrified) (2010)


 Total: 58,034 km
Paved: 34,936 km (includes 104 km of expressways)
Unpaved: 23,098 km (2009)


 335 km (320 km are navigable year round) (2010)

Merchant Marine:

 Total: 24
By type: cargo 4, chemical tanker 1, passenger/cargo 17, petroleum tanker 2
Foreign-owned: 3 (Germany 1, Norway 2)
Registered in other countries: 77 (Antigua and Barbuda 20, Belize 1, Cambodia 1, Cyprus 7, Dominica 6, Finland 2, Latvia 4, Malta 16, former Netherlands Antilles 1, Norway 1, Saint Kitts and Nevis 3, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 10, Sierra Leone 1, Sweden 3, Venezuela 1) (2010)

Ports and Terminals:

 Kuivastu, Kunda, Muuga, Parnu Reid, Sillamae, Tallinn

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Military Branches:

 Estonian Defense Forces: Land Force, Navy, Air Force (Eesti Ohuvagi), Defense League (Kaitseliit, KL) (2011)

Military Service Age and Obligation:

 Obligation for compulsory service ages 16-60, with conscription "likely" ages 18-27; service requirement 8-11 months (2009)

Manpower Available For Military Service:

 Males age 16-49: 291,801
Females age 16-49: 302,696 (2010 est.)

Manpower Fit For Military Service:

 Males age 16-49: 210,854
Females age 16-49: 251,185 (2010 est.)

Manpower Reaching Militarily Significant Age Annually:

 Male: 6,668
Female: 6,309 (2010 est.)

Military Expenditures:

 2% of GDP (2005 est.)

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Disputes - International:

 Russia recalled its signature to the 1996 technical border agreement with Estonia in 2005, rather than concede to Estonia's appending a prepared unilateral declaration referencing Soviet occupation and territorial losses; Russia demands better accommodation of Russian-speaking population in Estonia; Estonian citizen groups continue to press for realignment of the boundary based on the 1920 Tartu Peace Treaty that would bring the now divided ethnic Setu people and parts of the Narva region within Estonia; as a member state that forms part of the EU's external border, Estonia must implement the strict Schengen border rules with Russia

Illicit Drugs:

 Growing producer of synthetic drugs; increasingly important transshipment zone for cannabis, cocaine, opiates, and synthetic drugs since joining the European Union and the Schengen Accord; potential money laundering related to organized crime and drug trafficking is a concern, as is possible use of the gambling sector to launder funds; major use of opiates and ecstasy

Trafficking in Persons:

 Current situation: Estonia is a source, transit, and destination country for women subjected to forced prostitution, and for men and women subjected to conditions of forced labor; women from Estonia are found in sex trafficking situations in Finland, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Germany, and Italy; men and women from Estonia are subjected to conditions of forced labor in Spain, Sweden, Norway, and Finland

Tier rating: Tier 2 Watch List - Estonia does not fully comply with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking; however, it is making significant efforts to do so; despite these efforts, the government did not demonstrate evidence of increasing its efforts; Estonia remains the only European Union country without a specific trafficking law; trafficking offenders convicted under non-trafficking statutes avoided accountability; the Estonian Government, however, gave some financial support to NGOs who care for trafficking victims, and it developed a national action plan with elements addressing trafficking in persons (2011)

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Last Updated: December 2011

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