Estonia has been called the “most advanced digital society in the world”. The country established e-Governance as early as 1997, allowing citizens to access many public services online, and in 2000 the country declared access to the Internet a basic human right. In 2001 it created the Digital Identity Card, which allows all citizens to access everything from transportation to their medical records. And in 2005, Estonia became the first country in the world to allow citizens to vote online.
This background of a high-tech, digital society with low tax rates has made Estonia the Silicon Valley of Eastern Europe. Despite being a small country with only 1.3 million people, the country’s tech startup ecosystem continues to grow, with startups raising around €330 million in 2018.
Estonia has earned itself the reputation of being a “Baltic Tiger” or “E-stonia” due to its rapid advancement.
Some of the well-known start-up businesses, now worth billion dollars are TransferWise, the peer-to-peer money transfer and currency exchange, Taxify, Europe’s fastest-growing ride-sharing platform, and of course Skype, the video calls software.
Estonia is the perfect place for start-ups, due to the fast online process of establishing a company (only 15 minutes), one of the most liberal tax systems in the world with zero corporate income tax and top notch e-government that works closely with the startup ecosystem.