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Single Market Scoreboard

Country data: Estonia

Transposition (Estonia)

All comparisons are with the figures for 10 December 2020, the previous reporting date.

The last 2 years, the COVID-19 pandemic forced Member State authorities to address pressing priorities and affected their performance in transposing EU rules to some degree. In this context, the Commission has taken a number of extraordinary measures aimed at relieving the strain on Member States’ administrative resources. Nevertheless, it has also made clear that the Member States’ legal obligations to transpose EU directives in time remain unchanged.


Transposition deficit (percentage of all directives not transposed): 1.2% (last report: 0.5%) – a marked increase of 0.7 percentage points. Estonia is one of six Member States that more than doubled their deficit in the reporting period, consequently missing the 1% target set by the European Council.    
EU average = 1.6%; proposed target (in the Single Market Act) = 0.5%

Estonia used to constantly perform well on this criterion (except in year 2016, when Member States had to transpose an unusually large number of directives). However, it is now above the 1% threshold with a 140% increase in its last reported deficit. In addition, Estonia did not transpose 35% of the single market directives (9 out of 26) due to have been transposed in the 6 months before the cut-off date for calculating the deficit (1 June to 30 November 2021). Taking into account the constraints due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this shows that Estonia could organise the timely transposition of directives better (although the average delay in transposing directives is moderate – see below).

Overdue directives: 12 (last report: 5), including 3 on financial services and 3 in the connectivity/media/digital society sector. No directive is more than 2 years overdue.

Average delay in transposing directives: 5.8 months (last report: 3.6 months) – an increase of 2.2 months but Estonia is one of the Member States with the shortest average delay in transposing directives. 
EU average = 8.6 months

Ranking first last year, Estonia has now the sixth shortest average delay. Among its 12 outstanding directives, 3 have been due for more than 6 months and 9 for less than 6 months.

Conformity deficit (percentage of all directives transposed incorrectly): 0.9% (last report: 1.4%) – a marked decrease of 0.5 percentage points. Among Member States, Estonia had the second highest decrease in the reporting period but the second lowest deficit.  
EU average = 1.3%; proposed target (in the Single Market Act) = 0.5%

The number of new infringement proceedings that the Commission has launched against Member States for incorrectly transposing single market directives has more than halved in 2 years. Nevertheless, the number of ongoing cases is still high. With 9 directives presumed to have been incorrectly transposed, Estonia’s conformity deficit is well below the EU average.

Evolution of transposition deficit


Evolution of conformity deficit


Infringements (Estonia)

All comparisons are with the figures for 1 December 2020, the previous reporting date.


Pending single market cases: 8 (1 new case and 5 cases closed; last report: 12 pending cases) – a decrease of 4 cases and the highest percentage decrease among Member States (-33%).
EU average = 27 cases

Estonia has always had a small number of pending cases, well below the EU average. As in the previous reporting period, it is the Member State with the lowest number of pending cases.

The Commission launched 120 new cases against Member States in the reporting period (besides those for late transposition), and these were still pending on 1 December 2021. Only 1 case was launched against Estonia, which is the lowest number among Member States and well below the EU average of 4 new cases launched in the reporting period. However, 5 Estonian cases have been resolved since December 2020, which is less than the EU average (8).

Problematic sectors: no sector in particular.

Average case duration: 37 months for the eight single market cases not yet sent to the European Court of Justice (last report: 23.6 months) – this is a huge increase of 13.4 months and the third highest increase among Member States. Estonia is no longer the Member State with the shortest average case duration but is still below the EU average.             
EU average = 42.8 months

Estonia’s average case duration has significantly increased in the last 3 years (+45%). The average duration of its moderate backlog (8 cases) is particularly affected by a 10-year-old case on air transport. The launch of only 1 new case (whose average duration is less than a year) and the resolution of 5 cases with an average duration of 15 months have little impact on the final result.

Time taken to comply with Court rulings: Estonia has no single market case that is at the Court ruling stage of the procedure and closed in the last 5 years (last report: same).        
EU average = 46.8 months

Evolution of infringement cases


Internal Market Information System (Estonia)

Performance – Estonia performed very well.

  • Results for four indicators were above the EEA average with two in the top five among Member States in the respective areas.
  • The performance for four indicators decreased compared to the previous year.
  • Estonia scored 100% in the satisfaction survey on efforts made.
Requests accepted within one week (%)
Requests answered by the deadline agreed in IMI (%)
Satisfaction with timeliness of replies - as rated by counterparts (%)
Satisfaction with efforts made - as rated by counterparts (%)
Speed in answering requests (days)

Technical regulations information system (Estonia)


SOLVIT (Estonia)

  • Caseloadvery small
    Submitted cases: 10 (11 in 2020)
    Received cases: 1 (6 in 2020)
  • Cases not accepted: 10 (10 in 2020)

  • Resolution rate: 100% (100% in 2020)
  • Handling time (as home centre)
    Reply in 7 days: 100% (100% in 2020) – very good
    Cases prepared in 30 days: 100% (100% in 2020) – very good
    Solutions accepted within 7 days: 100% (100% in 2020 ) – good
  • Cases not accepted within 30 days: 100% (100% in 2020) – very good

  • Handling time (as lead centre)
    Cases accepted within 7 days:  100% (100% in 2020) very  good
    Cases closed in 10 weeks:  100% (100% in 2020) – very  good
  • Staffing level

Payment delays (Estonia)

In 2022, the average payment delay (the time exceeding the legal or contractually agreed payment terms) by Estonian public authorities was 16 days.

The average number of days needed for a business to have its invoices paid by other businesses (business-to-business payments) was 56.04 days.

Responsive administration and burden of regulation (Estonia)

Indicator 2021 EU average
Burden of government regulation (survey replies: 1 = worst, 7 = best) 4.3   3.6  
Digital public services to start and run a business (100% = best performing) 97.5% n/a  
Payment delays by public authorities 16 days 15.7 days
Time to resolve insolvency 3.0 years 2.0 years
Impact of regulation on long-term investment decisions (survey replies) 9.5% n/a  

Access to public procurement (Estonia)

Indicator 2021 EU average
Single bidder 25% 25%
No calls for bids 9% 6%
Publication rate (value advertised on Tenders Electronic Daily, in % of GDP) 8.6% 5.9%
Cooperative procurement (proportion of procedures with more than one buyer) 15% 5%
Award criteria (proportion of procedures awarded to cheapest bid) 82% 64%
Decision speed (days) 53   99  
SME contractors 81% 61%
SME bids 87% 73%
Procedures divided into lots 33% 31%
Missing calls for bids 0% 1%
Missing seller registration numbers 3% 29%
Missing buyer registration numbers 0% 11%

Note: A typical (mid-ranking) EU country is used for the EU average for all indicators except the publication rate. Due to delays in data availability, publication rate results are based on 2020 data.

Access to services and services markets (Estonia)

Indicator 2021 EU average
Restrictiveness indicator – architect 1.4   2.5  
Restrictiveness indicator – accountant 0.0   1.7  
Restrictiveness indicator – civil engineer 1.7   2.4  
Restrictiveness indicator – lawyer 3.2   3.4  
Restrictiveness indicator – real estate agent 0.0   1.3  
Restrictiveness indicator – patent agent 3.7   2.2  
Restrictiveness indicator – tourist guide 0.0   1.2  
Domestic priority letter prices, letter 20 g (2020) € 0.65 € 0.88
Intra-EU priority letter prices, letter 20 g (2020) € 1.40 € 1.53
Domestic transit times, day+1 performance, priority letters 20 g (2020) 84.2% 84.2%

Note: The EU restrictiveness indicator (EURI) measures the level of restrictiveness for the cross-border provision of services and the right of establishment for seven groups of professional services with a high share in EU firms’ intermediate consumption or cross-border mobility. The level of restrictiveness is measured on a scale from 0 (least restrictive) to 6 (most restrictive). 

Access to finance (Estonia)

Indicator 2021 EU average
Access to public financial support (% of SMEs indicating deterioration) 6.9%  11.3% 
Time to get paid by businesses (2022 survey) 56.0 days 52.5 days
Venture capital investments (% of GDP) 1.57% 0.48%
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