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Estonia:Political and Economic Situation

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Overview Estonia

Contents

Estonia:Political, Social and Economic Background and Trends

Estonia:Historical Development

Estonia:Main Executive and Legislative Bodies

Estonia:Population: Demographic Situation, Languages and Religions

Estonia:Political and Economic Situation

Estonia:Organisation and Governance

Estonia:Fundamental Principles and National Policies

Estonia:Lifelong Learning Strategy

Estonia:Organisation of the Education System and of its Structure

Estonia:Organisation of Private Education

Estonia:National Qualifications Framework

Estonia:Administration and Governance at Central and/or Regional Level

Estonia:Administration and Governance at Local and/or Institutional Level

Estonia:Statistics on Organisation and Governance

Estonia:Funding in Education

Estonia:Early Childhood and School Education Funding

Estonia:Higher Education Funding

Estonia:Adult Education and Training Funding

Estonia:Early Childhood Education and Care

Estonia:Organisation

Estonia:Teaching and Learning

Estonia:Assessment

Estonia:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Early Childhood Education and Care

Estonia:Single Structure Education (Integrated Primary and Lower Secondary Education)

Estonia:Organisation of Single Structure Education

Estonia:Teaching and Learning in Single Structure Education

Estonia:Assessment in Single Structure Education

Estonia:Organisational Variations and Alternative Structures in Single Structure Education

Estonia:Upper Secondary and Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Estonia:Organisation of General Upper Secondary Education

Estonia:Teaching and Learning in General Upper Secondary Education

Estonia:Assessment in General Upper Secondary Education

Estonia:Organisation of Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Estonia:Teaching and Learning in Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Estonia:Assessment in Vocational Upper Secondary Education

Estonia:Organisation of Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Estonia:Teaching and Learning in Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Estonia:Assessment in Post-Secondary Non-Tertiary Education

Estonia:Higher Education

Estonia:Types of Higher Education Institutions

Estonia:First Cycle Programmes

Estonia:Bachelor

Estonia:Short-Cycle Higher Education

Estonia:Second Cycle Programmes

Estonia:Programmes outside the Bachelor and Master Structure

Estonia:Third Cycle (PhD) Programmes

Estonia:Adult Education and Training

Estonia:Distribution of Responsibilities

Estonia:Developments and Current Policy Priorities

Estonia:Main Providers

Estonia:Main Types of Provision

Estonia:Validation of Non-formal and Informal Learning

Estonia:Teachers and Education Staff

Estonia:Initial Education for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Estonia:Conditions of Service for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Estonia:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers Working in Early Childhood and School Education

Estonia:Initial Education for Academic Staff in Higher Education

Estonia:Conditions of Service for Academic Staff Working in Higher Education

Estonia:Continuing Professional Development for Academic Staff Working in Higher Education

Estonia:Initial Education for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Estonia:Conditions of Service for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Estonia:Continuing Professional Development for Teachers and Trainers Working in Adult Education and Training

Estonia:Management and Other Education Staff

Estonia:Management Staff for Early Childhood and School Education

Estonia:Staff Involved in Monitoring Educational Quality for Early Childhood and School Education

Estonia:Education Staff Responsible for Guidance in Early Childhood and School Education

Estonia:Other Education Staff or Staff Working with Schools

Estonia:Management Staff for Higher Education

Estonia:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Higher Education

Estonia:Management Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

Estonia:Other Education Staff or Staff Working in Adult Education and Training

Estonia:Quality Assurance

Estonia:Quality Assurance in Early Childhood and School Education

Estonia:Quality Assurance in Higher Education

Estonia:Quality Assurance in Adult Education and Training

Estonia:Educational Support and Guidance

Estonia:Special Education Needs Provision within Mainstream Education

Estonia:Separate Special Education Needs Provision in Early Childhood and School Education

Estonia:Support Measures for Learners in Early Childhood and School Education

Estonia:Guidance and Counselling in Early Childhood and School Education

Estonia:Support Measures for Learners in Higher Education

Estonia:Guidance and Counselling in Higher Education

Estonia:Support Measures for Learners in Adult Education and Training

Estonia:Guidance and Counselling in a Lifelong Learning Approach

Estonia:Mobility and Internationalisation

Estonia:Mobility in Early Childhood and School Education

Estonia:Mobility in Higher Education

Estonia:Mobility in Adult Education and Training

Estonia:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Early Childhood and School Education

Estonia:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Higher Education

Estonia:Other Dimensions of Internationalisation in Adult Education and Training

Estonia:Bilateral Agreements and Worldwide Cooperation

Estonia:Ongoing Reforms and Policy Developments

Estonia:National Reforms in Early Childhood Education and Care

Estonia:National Reforms in School Education

Estonia:National Reforms in Vocational Education and Training and Adult Learning

Estonia:National Reforms in Higher Education

Estonia:National Reforms related to Transversal Skills and Employability

Estonia:European Perspective

Estonia:Legislation

Estonia:Glossary

The Government of the Republic is appointed by the President within 3 days after receiving a respective mandate from the Riigikogu or after the candidate for Prime Minister set up by the Riigikogu has presented him or her with the composition of the government.

According to the constitution, the Government of the Republic directs and coordinates the activities of governmental institutions. Governmental institutions comprise ministries, the state Chancellery and county governments as well as administrations and inspectorates and their local institutions authorised to represent executive state power.

There are 11 ministries in Estonia. Each ministry fulfils the tasks deriving from law and assigned by the Government of the Republic, and is the superior institution to administrations, inspectorates and other state organisations under its jurisdiction. The jurisdictions of ministries are established by the Riigikogu pursuant to the Government of the Republic Act.

Since regaining independence in 1991, Estonia has had 15 governments, all of which have been coalition governments comprising representatives of many political parties. There are 12 parties in Estonia. The largest of them, Keskerakond, Reformierakond, Isamaa ja Res Publica Liit, Sotsiaaldemokraatlik Erakond and Eestimaa Konservatiivne Rahvaerakond have also most frequently been the coalition members in different combinations.   

Estonian main economic goals have been laid down in the competitiveness strategy “Estonia 2020” adopted in 2013. The goals set out in the strategy conform to the objectives of Europe 2020 strategy agreed by the European Union countries and to the responsibilities which Estonia has under the Euro Plus Pact agreed at the European Council meeting in March 2011.

Estonia 2020 has been built on two central problems: decrease in the working-age population and comparatively cheap products and services. Further development of Estonian economy depends on how efficiently the country can tackle these issues.  

Having the future growth in mind, Estonia set two main objectives for the reform plan “Estonia 2020”:

  • To achieve a rapid productivity growth through both a higher capital intensity and provision of products and services with a higher added value,
  • To restore the pre-economic crisis high employment level.

In addition, the strategy set out 15 other objectives which are divided into four areas:

  • Educated people and a cohesive society
  • A competitive business environment
  • Environment-friendly economy and energetics
  • A sustainable and adaptive state

 
One of the priorities of all the governments has been the promotion of education and research.

After the restoration of independence, the Riigikogu has always pursued a conservative tax policy, irrespective of the composition of government. The Government continues to implement a conservative fiscal policy, which means maintaining the general government budget in structural balance. A strict fiscal policy guarantees that the Government debt remains at a low level, which is one of the prerequisites for insuring the long-term sustainability of public finances.

Despite the changes in the economic situation due to the global credit crisis, the Estonian fiscal policy has remained reliable and its support to the economy has allowed us to exit the crisis without a significant increase in the sovereign debt. Increasing the flexibility of the economy, supporting the business environment and improving functioning of the labour market have become the key issues that continue to contribute to ensuring sustainable development of the economy.

In 2015, Estonia witnessed an economic growth of 1.1% compared to 2014. The key impediments to the economic growth include low foreign demand and insufficient export opportunities of local companies. Due to a lack of foreign demand and price suppression the companies suffer from low return on investment. In the last years, economic grow has been based on consumption, relying on a rapid increase in income from employment.  

While the production volume of the export sector has shown a slow increase, the employment costs of companies have increased rapidly. The volume of added value created in Estonian economy has basically not changed compared to the previous year while employment has increased by more than 4%. A decrease in productivity in line with a strong increase in wages is not sustainable in long term. The economic growth of the recent years has been achieved mainly by an increase in employment rate. The prospects for a further increase in employment are modest as the labour participation and employment rates are reaching their historic peak. At the same time, the working age population decreases.  

Statistics

Population by age group, 1 January 2000, 2005, 2009, 2014, 2015 and 2016


0-9
10-19
20-29
30-39
40-54
55-64
65-
2000
143,147
210,738
189,239
186,624
278,713
157,980
205,630
2005
126,519
188,730
196,643
181,763
282,448
148,678
222,405
2009
141,508
142,713
208,691
185,980
272,497
159,151
228,887
2014
146,745
122,594
183,150
181,962
268,489
171,096
241,783
2015
146,657
122,781
176,690
182,747
266,873
171,171
246,352
2016
147,195
124,188
173,629
184,219
264,150
172,238
250,325

Source: Statistics Estonia.

Prognosis of population number (on the basis of 2014 data)

January 1, 2013
1,320,000
2040
1,195,000

Source: Statistics Estonia.

Births, deaths and natural increase, 2000, 2005, 2010, 2013, 2014 and 2015

Year Births Deaths Natural increase
2000 13,067
18,403
-5,336
2005 14,350
17,316
-2,966
2010 15,825
15,790
 35
2013
13,531
15,244
-1,713
2014
13,551
15,484
-1,933
2015
13,907
15,243
-1,336

Source: Statistics Estonia.

Migration of population, 2005, 2010, 2013, 2014 and 2015

Year Immigration Emigration
2005 1,436
4,610
2010 2,819
5,294
2013
4,098
6,740
2014
3,904
4,637
2015
15,413
13,003

Source: Statistics Estonia.

Level of education of population aged 15-74, (%) 2000, 2005, 2010,  2014 and 2015


2000 2005 2010 2014
2015
First level of education or lower 25.2 22.5 19.7 15.6
15.5
Second level of education 51.4 50.4 51.0 51.6
51.1
Third level of education 23.4 27.1 29.3 32.8
33.4

Source: Statistics Estonia.


Labour status of population aged 15-69, 2000, 2005, 2010, 2014 and 2015


2000 2005 2010 2014
2015
Labour force, thousands 658.2 653.8 678.8 666.1
675.5
             employed, thousands 568.3 601.6 563.2 616.6
633.4
             unemployed, thousands 89.9 52.2 115.6 49.5
42.1
Inactive persons, thousands 327.8 333.7 292.2 264.4
251.2
Total, labour force and inactive persons, thousands 986.0 987.5 971.0 930.7
926.7
Labour participation rate, % 66.8 66.2 69.9 71.6
72.9
Employment rate, % 57.6 60.9 58.0 66.3
68.4
Unemployment rate, %
13.7 8.0 17.0 7.4
62.4

Source: Statistics Estonia.

Gross Domestic Product (GDP), 2000, 2005, 2010, 2014 and 2015


2000 2005 2010 2014
2015
GDP at current prices, million euro 6,159.8
11,181.7
14,500.9
19,973.17
20,246.66

Change of GDP chain-linked volume compared to the

same period of the previous year (%)

9.7
8.9
2.3
2.9
1.5
GDP at current prices per capita, euros 4,350.8
7,990.7
10,142.0
15,186.0
15,405.1

Source: Statistics Estonia