Lugupeetud Härra Madis Habakukk
Lugupeetud Rektor Peeter Kross
Dear students, Head tuleviku tegijad
Ladies and Gentlemen
On the occasion of the opening of a new academic year I wish to congratulate the Estonian Business School on continuing its long-time successful activities.
I also wish to congratulate especially the new students for choosing the EBS, which is known to offer high-quality education and open up opportunities for those who wish to invest in hard work and serious academic pursuit.
The EBS has attracted international students for a long time. I know that among the foreign students this year there is a record number of my countrymen and countrywomen. On my part I wish to welcome them to Tallinn.
This is certainly a special year in the relationship between Finland and the Estonian Business School. The EBS opens a branch in Helsinki, widening the possibilities and choices of commercial and academic study in Finland.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
I am happy to say that Finland and Estonia are increasingly forming an integrated economic area. With Estonia having joined the euro zone, we expect investments to increase further. I will rush from here to the opening of another factory of a Finnish farm. There is more to come.
We have all experienced the great attraction that Estonia and especially Tallinn have for Finns. This country continues to be our favorite destination, and a new record will be made this year with over seven million crossings over the Gulf of Finland.
For all countries in Europe and elsewhere, Estonia represents a very special country. We have all celebrated the 20th anniversary of the regained independence of Estonia ten days ago. Its success in quickly becoming a Western democratic rule of law country is striking.
There is a lot to learn from Estonia’s economic policies as well. Estonia fulfilled the euro zone criteria in spite of a deep recession. Some weeks ago, when the credit ratings in many countries was falling, Estonia’s rating rose.
But we should always keep a watchful eye on all sides economic developments, including the well-being of the inhabitants. We should ask ourselves what social policies serve the people best. Finland and the other Nordic countries have greatly benefitted from developing and maintaining the Nordic model.
Right now, we are in the middle of international financial uncertainty. The euro zone is weakened and governments struggle to keep it on its feet.
There will be plenty to learn for all of us, students and professors alike, because the word of business and the economy never stays the same.
I wish everyone a very successful academic year.