Hamilton Announces Digital Partnership With Estonia


Finance Minister Simon Hamilton MLA today announced a digital partnership with the Estonian government.

Simon Hamilton made the announcement during a two day visit to Estonia as part of the Invest NI trade mission to the Baltic States of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.

[caption id="attachment_41113" align="alignleft" width="220"]Finance Minister Simon Hamilton MLA. Finance Minister Simon Hamilton MLA.[/caption]

A concordat has been signed between the Estonian Information Systems’ Authority (RIA) of the Government of the Republic of Estonia and the Department of Finance and Personnel’s Enterprise Shared Services (ESS).

The Minister said: “Estonia has one of the most advanced digital societies in the world and we have much to learn from their experiences. My Department has signed a concordat with the Estonian Information Systems’ Authority (RIA) which allows us to work together to build knowledge and skills that can be applied locally.

“This five-year agreement sets out a framework which enables closer working relationships on IT services between my Department and the Estonian Government. I met with the Authority and was impressed with the showcase of collaborative developments that our two IT services are working on together. These digital projects, could lead to the development of new services for use in both countries.”

“I want the people of Northern Ireland to be able to access government services via a range of digital channels as is the case in Estonia. Their example as a small state with a similar sized population to Northern Ireland is a clear illustration that developing excellent e-government can be done and done to a very high standard.

“Equally there are areas of our work in Northern Ireland especially on shared services which are amongst the best in Europe and we hope to be able to assist our friends in Estonia as they develop their infrastructure in these areas.

“Working collaboratively with the Estonian Government will help us to reform our online public sector services to provide better, cost effective, quality services to Northern Ireland citizens.”

Throughout the visit to Estonia the Minister held a series of meetings with the British-Estonian Chamber of Commerce and Government officials from the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications on foreign trade and entrepreneurship, where he heard how Estonia is delivering on its Digital 5 commitments and digital transformation.