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Estonian Navy’s duty is to protect the territorial waters of Estonia. In case of crisis, Navy defends harbour areas, sea lines of communication and by-sea approaches to the coastline. Co-operation with allied units will be done if deemed to be necessary.

The slogan of the Estonian Navy is “Call of the Sea – Call to Defend”.

Mine warfare

The top priority for the Navy is the development of mine countermeasures capability. It is also one of the main responsibilities during the time of peace. More than 80 000 sea mines were laid in the Baltic Sea during both World Wars. Since 1995, mine clearance operations have been carried out regularly in Estonian waters, resulting in disposal of more than 1200 explosive devices. Estonian Navy readily co-operates with NATO units and other navies of the Baltic Sea region in order to find and dispose of ordnance, thereby contributing to safe seagoing.

International co-operation

Ships of the Estonian Navy regularly participate in major international exercises and operations that are carried out in Baltic Sea and North Sea.

Even though it was not until 1994 when the Navy was re-established and despite of the fact that it incorporates one of the smallest fleets in the world, the young crews of the Navy ships have demonstrated excellent interoperability during international exercises and have proved to be equal partners with other navies.

NATO Mine Countermeasures Group

Standing NATO Mine Countermeasures Group 1 (SNMCMG1) is one of the main partners of Estonian Navy in NATO. Estonia was the first ally that contributed to the unit with the required staff, a support ship and and a minehunter.


Estonian Navy contributes to European Union and United Nation’s defence and humanitarian aid programmmes by working closely with their allies. The aim of operation Sophia is to undertake systematic efforts to identify, capture and dispose of vessels as well as enabling assets used or suspected of being used by migrant smugglers or traffickers.

Sea Surveillance Co-operation Baltic Sea SUCBAS

Estonian Navy is part of the Sea Surveillance Co-operation Baltic Sea (SUCBAS) organization. SUCBAS is a cornerstone for sea surveillance information exchange and co-operation within the Baltic Sea area and its approaches.

The aim of the co-operation is to enhance Maritime Situational Awareness benefiting maritime safety, security, environmental and law enforcement activities in the region by sharing relevant maritime data, information and knowledge between the participants.


Most of the Estonian Navy officers have been trained in European or US naval academies. In 2003, Estonian Navy established its own Centre of Naval Education and Training (CNET) to train non-commissioned officers.

Each Baltic state shares its limited training resources with the others and for instance, Estonia provides communications training in Baltic Naval Communications School in Tallinn. Latvia hosts common Baltic Naval Diving Training Centre in Liepāja.

Medium term goals

  • Maintain the readiness of three ships for participation in NATO-led operations, both independently or as a part of SNMCMG1;
  • Continuation of mine countermeasures capability development, including the management of mine database;
  • Development of national Naval and Maritime Integrated C31 System; continue the development of Centre for Naval Education and Training.


Commodore Jüri Saska

Commander of the Estonian Navy

Lieutenant (Junior Grade) Aleksander Espenberg

Public Affairs Officer of the Navy

Last updated: 17. April 2023, 11:51

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