The Borneo Post (Sabah)

Australia to open ‘popup embassy’ in Tallinn


TALLINN: Australia has announced that it will open its first ‘pop-up embassy’ in Estonia’s capital Tallinn, where the ambassador is to work for two months of the year.

For the rest of the year, the embassy will maintain a virtual presence in the cyber-savvy country, Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said in a statement.

“Estonia is one of the most technologi­cally advanced countries in the world. The new embassy will develop our engagement on cyber, e-government and digital transforma­tion, and support Australia’s involvemen­t in a number of high-level events on these issues,” she said.

Diplomat Kerin Ayyalaraju was also appointed Australia’s ambassador to Estonia. Australia has previously been represente­d in the country by an ambassador in Stockholm.

Estonian Foreign Minister Sven Mikser, who discussed the opening with Bishop on a visit to New York, said the government was pleased with the decision.

“This will doubtlessl­y make Australia more prominent in Estonia and in our region on the whole. The ambassador working at the pop-up embassy will certainly expand the already constructi­ve and intensive cooperatio­n that our two countries enjoy,” he said.

He also expressed hope “that Australia’s positive example of this innovative pop-up embassy encourages other countries to implement similar cooperatio­n solutions in Estonia”.

Australia is home to one of the largest overseas Estonian communitie­s with 8551 people of Estonian descent, according to a census in 2011. — AFP

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