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Coming & living

Estonia is a clean, safe, and tech-savvy country where your input is valued and all your out-of-the-box ideas truly cherished.

  • 51% of Estonia covered by forest
  • #2 in Freedom on the Net 2020
  • 89% use the internet regularly

Visa information

2007Estonia joined the Schengen area

The up-to-date list of nationals who do not need a visa to enter Estonia or need one for stays of more than 90 days in a 180-day period only can be found on the webpage of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Estonia is a member of the European Union and Schengen agreement, meaning that EU common visa policy applies for the country.

The Ministry’s webpage also provides you with information on applying for a visa, the EU common visa policy, and long stay visas. This includes requirements for visas needed for business purposes and information on visa fees.

Visit Estonia’s webpage provides you with useful information to help you get to Estonia and make your visit a pleasant one.

Residence permit for business

To facilitate doing business in Estonia, there is a residence permit for business program in place. It is possible to apply for a temporary residence permit for business:

  • under general conditions – if you have a holding in a company or you operate as a sole proprietor and you have invested in business activity in Estonia at least 65,000 euros of capital (in the case of a self-employed person, 16,000 euros). The company’s equity capital, subordinated liability and the amount of registered fixed assets can be regarded as constituting investment
  • for conducting business at a startup – the startup company must have been previously evaluated by the expert committee, unless a specification applies. You can find more information on the evaluation and specifications of startups on the webpage of Police and Border Guard Board or on the webpage of Startup Estonia
  • as a major investor – if you have made a direct investment of at least 1,000,000 euros in a company entered into the commercial register of Estonia that invests mostly into the Estonian economy, or an investment in an investment fund, according to the investment policy of which the instruments of the fund are invested mainly in the companies entered into the commercial register of Estonia. You can find more information on the conditions of applying for residence permit as a major investor on the webpage of the Police and Border Guard Board

For submitting an application, please address in person a foreign representation of the Republic of Estonia. If you have a legal basis for staying in Estonia, you may submit the application at the Police and Border Guard Board office. For that you need to make a reservation.

If you have any questions regarding residence permits, please contact a migration advisor.

Sustainable development

30thThe 2020 Environmental Performance Index

Estonia ranks among the top countries in the world in terms of sustainable development indicators that consider harmonious development of social, economic, and environmental areas.

Up from 21st place in 2016, Estonia ranked 10th globally according to the Sustainable Development Report 2021. There are several fields in which Estonia’s position is good in comparison with other countries – quality and accessible education, fast and accessible services thanks to the availability of e-solutions as well as effective healthcare organization as a few examples. The share of renewable energy in the end consumption of energy in Estonia has grown as well.

Estonia has a unique energy mix – the energy supply is dominated by domestically produced oil shale. This gives the country a high degree of energy independence but also a high carbon intensity. In early 2021, the Estonian government has announced plans to reach carbon neutrality by 2050 and to stop producing shale oil in 2035. The European Commission has approved to support electricity production from renewable sources and efficient co-generation in Estonia. This will increase the share of renewable energy sources in the distribution of Estonian energy and help Estonia in its transition to low CO2 emission and a green economy in line with the European Green Deal.

The World Health Organization has ranked Estonia’s air as some of the cleanest air in the world, along with countries like Finland and Iceland. The fact that over half of Estonia’s land area is covered by forest (51,3%), making it the 6th most forested nation in Europe, contributes to the high air quality. Nature reserves make up about 1/5 of Estonia’s wilderness, ensuring its preservation for the future. The appreciation for nature also makes the country one of the most sustainable in the world.

Today more than 2/3 of Europeans live in towns and cities. Therefore, urban areas concentrate most of the environmental challenges facing our society but also bring together commitment and innovation to resolve them. The Estonian capital has been crowned the European Green Capital 2023 – Tallinn impressed the international Jury with its systemic approach to green governance and interlinked strategic goals, which reflect the ambitions of the European Green Deal.

Reducing thoughtless consumption, focusing on reusing resources, and taking steps to fight climate change are issues that are gaining traction all over the world. We need research-based practical information and effective examples to help people make environmentally friendly choices. Estonia could be the best country for the creation and implementation of such innovative solutions. So, for the cleaner future, Estonians have initiated a Green Tiger – collaboration platform that is designed to boost environmental awareness and create a basis for a green economy.

Living in Estonia

12thin the world for quality of life in mid-2021

Imagine yourself living in a society where your input is valued and all your out-of-the-box ideas truly cherished. Imagine living in a clean, safe and tech-savvy country together with educated people who value innovation and forward-looking ideas. Estonia is one of Europe’s most spacious countries. With a territory roughly matching that of the Netherlands, it is home to only 1.3 million people.

In Estonia, you are never more than a 30-minute drive away from a forest or a lake. The living environment is very clean, relaxed and safe. Despite its size, it would still take a lifetime to enjoy all the galleries, theatres, concerts, festivals, markets, fairs, and beaches this country has to offer.

In Estonia, most everyday tasks are carried out digitally. From online banking to e-school and digital prescriptions, our public services run efficiently and smoothly.

The clean environment comes with an added bonus: natural and organic food is Estonia’s priority. This means you’ll always know what you are eating, and will feel good.

Everyone can rent or buy real estate in Estonia. Both modern and more historic accommodation have remained affordable. You’ll also find it quite easy to find a place with a park or a forest nearby.

Estonians work hard and party well. The organisational work ethic is very high in this part of the world, but everyone also knows how to relax. As proof, new and surprising entertainment venues and restaurants pop up every season all over the country. To find out more about living in Estonia, visit the Living in Estonia section of the Work in Estonia webpage.

Doing business in Estonia

News & events

Need more information?

Need more information?

What is it like to run a business in Estonia? How to benefit from the e-solutions and the efficiency of our business culture? What are the opportunities in specific sectors? Who to partner up with?

The Estonian Investment Agency’s team is happy to help you via its complimentary e-Consulting service, organize online or offline follow-up events such as virtual investment visits and guide you through the fairly simple process of investing in Estonia.

Request e-consulting