In Europe, it has become a custom to designate European Capitals of Culture, an honour that has been bestowed on Estonia’s capital Tallinn for 2011. Inspired by this tradition, Tallinn will be known as the Capital of European Law in the following year 2012, when it will host one of the most distinguished EU law conferences, the XXV FIDE Congress.
Estonia has the great honour of being the first Central and Eastern European country to organise the international FIDE Congress. Tallinn is an ideal location for the congress, as delegates will have the opportunity to explore its medieval Old Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, that was once a major centre of the Hanseatic League. Tallinn’s rich architectural heritage reflects Estonia’s history from medieval to modern times, and the rapid economic progress during the years of independence.
While the Congress will surely contribute to the development and enrichment of European law, it will also introduce Estonia, Tallinn and the country’s jurisprudence to European and global audiences, and help Estonia prepare for the Estonian Presidency of the EU in the first half of 2018.
Yet the EU and EU law are not just for lawyers and policy-makers. The European Union ought to be viewed as an important part of our daily lives. As hosts of the 2012 FIDE Congress, the people of Estonia will have a unique opportunity to learn more about their rights under EU law and how they can influence policy making at different levels. We look forward to sharing this experience with you.