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President Kaljulaid: Schengen has given border communities impetus for co-operation

Tõntso Agro on 320-pealise lehmakarjaga piimatootmisettevõte.
Tõntso Agro in South-Estonia has 320 cows and is producing milk.
© Vabariigi Presidendi Kantselei


"As neighbours, we did have close relations before; however, the abolishment of border control at the border control points in Estonia and Latvia following the establishment of a common Schengen visa space made communication between people even easier and smoother and gave impetus to border communities for greater co-operation and the joint development of their communities," said President Kersti Kaljulaid in Valga, at an event held to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Schengen.

Together, we have developed an entrepreneurship-friendly environment, improved health care services, established better conditions for cross-border employment and developed our living environment, stated the President of the Republic.

It doesn't take long to get used to good things, and the same goes for the freedom that the common Schengen visa area has given us, added President Kaljulaid. "We take the absence of borders for granted; however, we need to work daily to maintain the situation, as the calls to scrap Schengen have not disappeared from Europe today. To this end, we need to protect the foundation and common values of the European Union, which are also the corner stones of invisible borders of Schengen. We need closer co-operation between our law enforcement specialists and authorities responsible for domestic security to determine methods and practical tools to keep our border areas both open and safe," stated the Estonian Head of State.

President of the Republic of Latvia, Raimonds Vējonis, took part in the celebrations organised to mark the 10th anniversary of Estonia and Latvia acceding Schengen. The heads of state of Estonia and Latvia also visited Valga County Vocational Training Centre, which offers education to both Estonians and Latvians.

Office of the President
Communications Department