On 8th June, 2011, the Estonian Foreign Minister Urmas Paet and the Norwegian Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre have signed in Oslo the Memoranda of Understanding between the European Economic Area and Norway, which regulate the implementation of financial mechanisms. Until 2014, Estonia will receive a total of 44.9 million € as grants from the European Economic Area and Norway.
The main objectives of the Norway grants is to promote reducing the economic and social disparities in the European Economic Area and to strengthen the bilateral relations between Norway and recipient countries in mutually agreed priority fields. In addition to Estonia, among the recipient countries, there are Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Greece, Malta, Spain and Portugal.
The Memorandum of Understanding about the Norwegian Financial Mechanism 2009-2014 came into force on 9th June, 2011. Norway's net subsidies to Estonia add up to 23.68 million, three programmes of which fall within the area of responsibility of the Ministry of Social Affairs: