Deputy mayor kicked out of Narva city government

Narva city government has decided to release from office deputy mayor Andrei Filippov who is suspected of corruption and distorting competition, writes Äripäev.

The police detained Filippov and three local businessmen last week on suspicion of participating in an arrangement whereby the deputy mayor received bribe money for helping construction companies secure city contracts.

Read more from BBN

Hansabuss opens direct bus line from Tallinn Airport to city center

Hansabuss launched today a new bus line No. 90K to provide passengers with easy access from Tallinn Airport to the city center.  The new route should make it easier for foreign travelers to navigate in the city.  The bus departs from the airport every full and half hour from 8 o’clock in the morning until 6 o’clock in the afternoon.

Read more from BBN

Price of electricity to go up by about 20% in 2013

A new survey by the ministry of economic affairs says that price of household electricity will go up by about a fifty in 2013 when Estonia fully liberalises its electricity market and everybody will be buying electricity from the open market, writes Äripäev.

The ministry has prepared amendments to the electricity market act and sent the draft amendments to other government agencies for approval.

When the Estonian electricity market is liberalized, its price will be set by the Nordic electricity exchange.

 

In April, one MWh of electricity cost 55 euros on the exchange while the regulated price on the Estonian domestic market was 30 euros per MWh.

The finance ministry has said that full liberalisation of the Estonian power market mean that the price of electricity will go up by about 20% in the next three years.

“Our spring forecast estimates that the major cause for an increase in electricity tariffs in the next few years will be the opening of the electricity market in 2013,” said Rainer Laurits from the finance ministry.

Source: BBN

Avies starts flying between Stockholm, Jonkoping on weekdays

The Estonian airline Avies will start flying between Stockholm and the city of Jonkoping in southern Sweden on weekdays, as well as from Tallinn to Jonkoping on Sundays and from Jonkoping to Tallinn on Fridays.

There will be two daily flights on the Stockholm-Jonkoping route, the company said. The Avies aircraft will be based in Jonkoping and the Stockholm flights will take place from the Bromma airport.

The Swedish route will be served by a Jetstream 32 of Avies which underwent thorough maintenance before the launch of the route. Avies operates the Swedish flights for the regional operator Flyglinjen, which arranges ticket sales.

Avies manager Allan Soll said the carrier plans to announce further Scandinavian regular flights in coming weeks. The airline also flies between Tallinn and the regional capital Kärdla in Estonia.

Source: Estonian Review

Mayor of Riga collapses during Riga Marathon

Riga city mayor Nils Usakovs has been hospitalized after taking part in the Nordea city marathon over the weekend. Usakovs had been attempting to take part in the half marathon event when he was forced to withdraw and sent to the hospital with signs of hyperthermia.  As of Monday afternoon he was still unconscious but in stable condition.

Read more from The Baltic Times

Producer price indices increased in April

According to Statistics Estonia, in April 2011 the producer price index of industrial output changed by 0.9% compared to March and by 5.2% compared to April of the previous year.

 

In April compared to the previous month, the producer price index was more than average influenced by the increase in prices in the production of food and metal products and by the decrease in the prices of electrical apparatus. Compared to April 2010, the index was more than average influenced by the increase in prices in the production of food and metal products.

Change in the producer price index of industrial output by economic activity, April 2011
Economic activity March 2011 –
April 2011, %
April 2010 –
April 2011, %
TOTAL 0.9 5.2
Energy supply 0.3 1.1
Mining -0.9 -0.7
Manufacturing 1.1 5.9

In April 2011 the export price index increased by 0.2% compared to March 2011 and by 10.5% compared to April of the previous year.

In April compared to the previous month, the export price index was more than average influenced by the increase in the prices of metals, chemical products and mineral fuels and by the decrease in the prices of electrical apparatus and peat products.

In April 2011 the import price index increased by 1.1% compared to March 2011 and by 12.4% compared to April of the previous year.

In April compared to the previous month, the import price index was more than average influenced by the increase in the prices of mineral fuels, chemical products, metals and wood products.

Source: Statistics Estonia

 

US Secret Service opens office in Tallinn

The U.S. Secret Service on Friday officially opened its office in the Estonian capital Tallinn. Ambassador Michael C. Polt said at the opening that the office, which is the first in the Baltic region, will strengthen the international network of the Secret Service. Although the name of the agency is Secret Service it is not secret, he quipped.

The Tallinn office of the Secret Service will engage in co-operation to combat cyber crime, but this will not be its only task, the ambassador said.

Estonia’s Justice Minister Kristen Michal said the co-operation between U.S. and Estonian law enforcement agencies will become closer after the opening of the office. Both countries have great common interest in combating cyber crime, he noted.

Visiting Secret Service Assistant Director A.T. Smith said the opening of the office does not bring changes to Estonian and U.S. authorities’ co-operation to fight cyber crime. The Secret Service has worked together with the Estonian authorities before but now “we’re only a phone call away,” he pointed out.

Smith acknowledged that one of the reasons why Estonia was chosen for the location of the office is that criminals from this Baltic state are connected with a number of solved international cyber crimes and bank frauds. As a second reason, he named Estonia’s information technology-related progress, describing the country as the Baltic Silicon Valley.

The Secret Service will work closely together with its Estonian, Latvian and Lithuanian law enforcement colleagues in criminal investigation.

The U.S. embassy earlier said that Estonia was selected as the site for the new Secret Service office “due to both the investigative nexus it provides in combating cyber and financial crimes, as well as the opportunity it provides the agency in the fulfilment of its protective duties within the region.”

The Secret Service is one of the oldest federal law enforcement agencies in the United States, established as early as 1865. It is best known as the agency responsible for protecting the president of the United States. At the same time it has other duties, such as combating crime directed against the financial infrastructure of the United States, including counterfeiting of banknotes and treasury checks, and cyber crime.

Source: Estonian Review

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