It has been announced that Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit of Norway are undertaking an official two-day visit to Estonia starting on Wednesday this week to mark the country’s centennial.
It comes as part of a larger visit to the Baltic region which began in Latvia today and will continue in Lithuania before concluding in Estonia. The three countries are of great importance to Norway as allies and partners and this trip is an important recognition of these integral ties.
Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania all have active bilateral cooperation with Norway through Norwegian support programs and NATO security policy. Norway is also home to hundreds of Baltic enterprises which are key contributors to the Norwegian economy.
The royal visit will commence in Tallinn, Estonia where the royal couple will travel to Kadriorg Palace to host a joint press conference with Estonia head of state, President Kersti Kaljulaid. They will then plant an oak tree at Kadriorg Park to support the “Estonia’s 100 Oaks” initiative which is marking Estonia’s centennial celebrations and the park’s tricentennial anniversary.
The Crown Prince will follow the planting by meeting with President of the Riigikogu, Eiki Nestor, and then travelling to Freedom Square where he will lay a wreath at the foot of the War of Independence Victory Column.
On the second day of the visit, Thursday, the Crown Prince and Crown Princess will attend a Norwegian-Estonian business forum organised jointly by Innovation Norway and Enterprise Estonia. The couple will officially open the forum before visiting Telliskivi Creative City and Tallinn’s medieval Old Town.
Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit’s visit is the first from the Norwegian royal family since the visit of King Harald V and Queen Sonja in August 1998.
The intervening years have, however, seen visits from Estonian Presidents Arnold Rüütel in April 2002 and Toomas Jendrik Ives in September 2014.