Estonia and Portugal have good relations. During the years the number of high-level visits and cultural links between Estonia and Portugal has increased.
In 2021, Estonia and Portugal celebrated the 100th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Estonia and Portugal in 2021. Portugal recognised the Republic of Estonia de jure on 3 February 1921. Portugal never recognised the occupation of Estonia by the Soviet Union. Although Estonia and Portugal are geographically located in the different parts of Europe, our countries are both members of the European Union and allies in NATO and share common values and understanding. Contacts have been established through various visits and meetings of different level. In April 2019, Kersti Kaljulaid, the President of Estonia, held a state visit to Portugal. Previously, president Arnold Rüütel visited Portugal in 2005 and president Toomas Hendrik Ilves in 2009. In May 2003, the state visit of the President of Portugal, Jorge Fernando Branco de Sampaio was held to Estonia.
In May of 2014, an important milestone in bilateral security and defence policy cooperation was the three-day exercise in the field of cyber security held in Lisbon, jointly organised by Estonia, Portugal and the European Defence Agency (EDA). The idea of the exercise was to play through a cyber-crisis situation on the level of strategic decision-makers. The goal was to raise awareness regarding cyber security, cyber-crisis management capacity building, and introducing and deploying new approaches to leadership. The training’s theoretical part was followed by a practical exercise.
Estonia and Portugal have had effective cooperation, where diplomats have been able to use the premises of each other’s missions. From April 2013 to June 2014, an Estonian diplomat worked at the Portuguese Embassy in Brasilia, Portuguese diplomats worked at the Estonian Embassy in Vilnius during Lithuania’s Chairmanship of the Council of the European Union in the first half of 2013, at the Estonian Embassy in Riga, Latvia, from December 2014 to June 2015, and at the Estonian Embassy in Astana from September 2014 to December 2015.
Portugal contributed to the air policing of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania with planes from September 2014 until the end of that year and participated in the rotation in the summer of 2016. In 2021, Portugal participated in the NATO Baltic Air Policing from Siauliai.
In the XIV Riigikogu, the chairman of the Estonia-Portugal parliamentary group is Aivar Sõerd and the vice-chairman is Raivo Tamm.