Estonia and New Zealand

History of Diplomatic Relations

New Zealand recognised Estonia when it joined the League of Nations on 22 September 1921 (New Zealand joined the organisation as a founding member in 1919 together with other British dominions, such as Australia, Canada, the Union of South Africa, and India, which had the status of a British colony).

New Zealand re-recognised Estonia on 28 August 1991 and diplomatic relations were established between the two countries on 6 January 1992.

Estonian Ambassador to New Zealand Andres Unga presented his credentials to Governor-General Jerry Mateparae on 20 March 2013. The Ambassador resides in Canberra, Australia.

As of 2007 Estonia’s honorary consul in New Zealand has been Tõnu Loorpärg.

The Ambassador of New Zealand Mary Patricia Thurston presented her credentials to President Kersti Kaljulaid on 9 January 2018. The ambassador resides in Warsaw.


to Estonia

October 2018 Minister for Digital Government Megan Woods attended the Tallinn Digital Summit
November 2015 Internal Affairs Minister Peter Dunne in the framework of the D5 meeting
July 2015 Minister for Trade and Associate Foreign Minister Todd McClay
April 2014 Minister for Communications and of the Environment Amy Adams
April 2010 Foreign Minister Murray McCully
September 2006 Foreign Minister Winston Peters
April 2004 Speaker of the Parliament of New Zealand Jonathan Hunt
September 2004 Foreign Minister Philip Goff


to New Zealand  
October 2018 President Kersti Kaljulaid
March 2016 Foreign Minister Marina Kaljurand and Finnish Foreign Minister Timo Soini on a joint visit with a business delegation
April 2009  Foreign Minister Urmas Paet


The first and currently only bilateral agreement between Estonia and New Zealand is an intergovernmental agreement on the right to work in the field of tourism, which came into effect on 5 November 2007.

Economic relations

Trade between Estonia and New Zealand remains in the €2-3 million range. In 2015, trade grew and amounted to €3.7 million, making New Zealand Estonia’s 77th trade partner. The proportion of total turnover still remains below 0.1%.

Estonian exports to New Zealand in 2015 amounted to €1.4 million, which is the best result in the last six years. The greatest increase was in the export of certain industrial products (+€0.7 million). New Zealand was Estonia’s 85th export partner and 62th import partner.

Total Trade between Estonia and New Zealand 2010-2018 (in millions of euros)

  Export Import
2010 1.2 1.1
2011 0.4 1.4
2012 0.5 2.0
2013 0.9 2.3
2014 0.47 1.9
2015 1.4 2.3
2016 1.4 2.4
2017 3.7 3.3
2018 3.67 3.6

The main articles of export in 2015 were:

  • other industrial products – 63.2%
  • wood and wood products – 10.3%
  • machinery and equipment – 8.9%
  • paper pulp and products thereof – 7.5%

The main articles of import in 2015 were:

  • textiles and textile products – 37%
  • animal products – 25.1%
  • wood and wood products – 15%

Direct investments

According to Eesti Pank, as of 31 December 2017 New Zealand’s direct investments in Estonia amounted to €2.6 million. Investments have been made in many sectors: the manufacturing industry, wholesale and retail trade, transportation and storage, the information and communications sector, finance and insurance activities, real estate, vocational, scientific and technology-related activities, and aid activities.

As of May 2017, 5 companies with New Zealand holdings were listed in the Estonian Commercial Register.

Due to data protection principles, the volume of Estonian investments in New Zealand has not been made public. Investments have been made in the manufacturing industry.

Source: Statistical Office of Estonia