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Finland and Estonia set up a joint institute to develop X-Road technology

Ministry of Finance
Publication date 7.3.2017 17.36
Press release

Finland and Estonia enhance their cooperation by setting up the Nordic Institute for Interoperability Solutions. The agreement on this was signed on 7 March during the state visit of the President of Estonia, H.E. Ms. Kersti Kaljulaid and her spouse Mr. Georgi-Rene Maksimovski. The institute, to be placed in Estonia, operates in the form of an association governed by private law, and its mission is to develop the X-Road technology to be used in the -palveluväylä digital service.

Minister of Entrepreneurship and Information Technology of Estonia Urve Palo and Finnish Minister of Foreign Trade and Development Kai Mykkänen signed the agreement on setting up the institute at the Business Forum of the two countries. The parties to the agreement are the Ministry of Finance of Finland and the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications of Estonia. Minister Mykkänen signed the agreement under the authority of Minister of Local Government and Public Reforms Anu Vehviläinen, who is responsible for the digitalisation of public services.

Cooperation between several countries across state borders is possible

The aim of the institute is to engage in cooperation on a long-term basis, secure a high quality standard, enable cross-border components for e-government infrastructure, and ensure the operative development and strategic management of X-Road. The institute also aims for savings in the resources, practical collaboration and sharing of experiences, and strengthening development innovations. The operation model is something quite unique in the world.

“The new institute means even deeper cooperation between Finland and Estonia. It also enables cross-border cooperation among several countries. So far bilateral agreements have been required for all e-operations across national borders”, says Minister of Local Government and Public Reforms Anu Vehviläinen.

The institute solidifies the collaborative arrangements based on fixed-term agreements for the years ahead, while the parties are still also entitled to engage in their own development work.

The institute continues the tradition of excellent Finnish-Estonian cooperation

The main data exchange solution for Finnish public sector organisations, -palveluväylä, is based on X-Road technology. Palveluväylä was introduced in Finland as part of the programme implementing the National Architecture for Digital Services, and the public sector organisations have a statutory obligation to use it. The institute continues the well-functioning cooperation between Finland and Estonia started under the programme. Technically the X-Road of Estonia and the Finnish Palveluväylä (National Data Exchange Layer) are to be linked together during spring 2017.


Olli-Pekka Rissanen, Senior Specialist, tel. +358 2955 30364, olli-pekka.rissanen(at)

Tuomas Vanhanen, Special Adviser to the Minister, tel. +358 2955 30216, tuomas.vanhanen(at)

Anu Vehviläinen Kai Mykkänen Public Sector ICT