The thesis for e-residency is simple; to bring capital and knowledge to the nation and to be a beacon for international business.
In December 2015 I applied for Estonian e-residency on a whim. The small Baltic nation Estonia nestled alongside Russia and Latvia has been the trailblazer for e-government innovation particularly since its independence since the collapse of the Soviet Union.
The Estonians invited Skype and conduct most, if not all government transactions online, including voting. Estonians can even walk to their pharmacy to pick up their chill pills, with no paperwork required.
Why is Estonia doing e-residency?
The Estonian Government has a long history of digital government services following its split from the Soviet Union in 1991. In its Digital Agenda for Estonia 2020, the Government laid out its intentions for e-residency:
“Estonia will start offering its secure and convenient services to the citizens of other countries. Virtual residence or e-Residence will be launched, meaning that Estonia will issue non-residents with electronic identity in the form of digital ID cards. The aspiration for Estonia is to become as re-known [sic] for its e-services as Switzerland is in the field of banking.”
The thesis for e-residency is simple; to bring capital and knowledge to the nation and a beacon for international business.
What it does
I have used my e-Residency card to verify the authenticity of contracts signed digitally via Funderbeam, an Estonian company in the startup scene.