Estonian Air to fly to Bromma, Sweden

Moving in to claim a segment vacated by Flybe, Estonian Air will offer another way to get to Stockholm next month.

It will fly to Bromma airport, which is just 8 kilometers from the city center and near headquarters of some Estonian-based companies, twice each weekday, starting September 29.

“Meetings with business customers and market analysis showed that the flights to Sweden require more freedom of choice,” said a member of the national carrier’s management board, Indrek Randveer, on Postimees’s online site.

One of the only options for the one-hour hop across the water, the carrier’s flight to Arlanda, is generally priced at 150-200 euros. The introductory rate for the Bromma link will be about half that.

Estonian Air flies to Arlanda 23 times a week.

Source: ERR News

Port of Tallinn seeking new leaders

State-owned Port of Tallinn has announced a competition for the CEO spot, and for a board member, a day after another state giant, Eesti Energia, said it was looking for candidates to lead its company.

Ain Kaljurand, the current CEO of the Port of Tallinn, has been in the firing line before, when his job was subject to a dispute between IRL and the Reform Party, then-government coalition members.

Three years ago the supervisory board chairman Neinar Seli, now only a member of the Supervisory Board, blocked the move. Seli himself has received heat as he supported the company’s sponsorship policies, while also being the chairman of the nation’s Olympic committee.

The company also came under fire in 2012 for work that was being done on the Port of Muuga, saying that the company had caused 2.4 million euros in losses to the state by exceeding its budget in the construction of a quay for the container terminal in Muuga Harbor. That work has now been completed.

The Port of Tallinn announced Tuesday it had seen record traffic and profits at its port facilites in the first six months of the year. The company said it had experienced a 16 percent rise in profits and a 7 percent increase in turnover in that period, and a 5 percent growth in passenger traffic.

Requirements for the top job at the company are a little less stringent compared to Eesti Energia, with only five years experience asked for as the head of a large organization, instead of six for the energy giant, and a higher education degree, not a MBA.

Source: ERR News

Government approves 600 mEUR transport reconstruction plan

The Cabinet approved on Thursday a number of transport-related projects, including tackling two traffic bottlenecks in Tallinn by 2017.

Two grandest projects are a road from the Russalka statue between Kadriorg and Pirita in Tallinn to the port, and the reconstruction of the Haabersti roundabout, Estonia’s most dangerous intersection for accidents.

Besides the two projects, which according to Economic Minister Urve Palo, would cut morning and evening traffic jams, the capital’s tram line will be extended to the airport.

Investments will be made into increasing railway line speeds to 120 kilometers per hour on passenger routes. Regional ports and ferries servicing islands will also get an injection.

The 600 million euro package of projects is, in essence, an action plan to use EU funds, and the basis for the creation of the next state budgets in the field of transportation.

Source: ERR News

Tallink charters its cruise ferry to Australia

Estonian listed ferry group Tallink and Bridgemans Services Ltd. have entered into a charter agreement to charter Tallink’s cruise ferry Silja Europa to Australia from August
2014 as an accommodation vessel.

The period of the charter is at least 14 months with an option to extend up to 48 months.

For Tallink, the deal means that M/S Baltic Queen which is operating on Tallinn-Stockholm route will change to Tallinn-Helsinki route on 7 August 2014 and M/S Romantika which is operating on Riga-Stockholm route will change to Tallinn-Stockholm route. M/S Isabelle will continue the service on Riga-Stockholm route.

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Oleg Ossinovski is the richest person in Estonia

The business daily Äripäev has named transport mogul Oleg Ossinovski as the richest person in Estonia, in its annual list of the 500 richest people in Estonia.

Ossinovski, whose son Jevgeni Ossinovski is a Social Democrat MP and who helped finance the 2011 campaign for the seat, saw his fortunes increase by 75 million euros to 297.9 million, Äripäev said today. Skinest Rail, owned by Ossinovski, had a excellent year, sells and repairs train rolling stock in the Baltics, Ukraine and Russia. Ossinovski also owns Spacecom AS, which leases railroad tanker cars.Oleg Ossinovski

Hillar Teder of food retailer O’Key Group, who had claimed the spot in the previous two years, is now second, with the daily lopping 55 million euros off its estimate of his worth to take him to a mere 295 million euros.

The rest of the top 10 were as follows:

3. Priit Piilmann, major shareholder in Viru Keemia Group – 211.2 million euros (132 million in 2012)

4. Armin Karu, major shareholder of Olympic Entertainment Group – 161.5 million euros (112.5 million)
5. Toomas Annus, chairman and major shareholder of Merko real estate developer – 143.1 million euros (133.8 million)
6. Margus Kangro, major shareholder in Viru Keemia Group – 132.1 million euros (104.4 million)
7. Fjodor Berman, owner and head of BLRT Group – 119 million euros (182.2 million)
8. Marcel Vichmann, owner of Edelaraudtee and GoBus – 117.5 million euros (107.1 million)
9. Sonny Aswani, managing director of the Tolaram Group in Estonia – 117.2 million euros (109.9 million)
10. Roman Stroykov, an industrial wholesaler – 115.1 million euros (89.5 million)

Source: ERR News

Maxima builds a huge logistics center

Retail chain Maxima is building one of Estonia’s largest logistics centers, taking up 45,000 square meters of space, and providing work for 350 people.

The purpose of the logistics center is to create a central storage complex, which will service all Maxima stores across Estonia. The total area of the center encompasses around 45,000 square meters, which will make it one of Estonia’s biggest logistics buildings.

Dry, cold and container storage areas will be built in the complex alongside with 130 docks to move goods. These platforms will service around 300 deliveries daily. The project is expected to cost around 30 million euros.

Work on the center began this week in Harju County and is planned for completion in December 2015.

Source: ERR News

Postal service fees to increase 18 pct in September

The Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communication has approved a draft of regulations that will universally raise postal rates on September 1.

Ordinary letter postage sent to national addresses will rise from 0.45 euros to 0.55. The price increase applies to all universal postal services, which will raise 18.2% on average. Prices are also rising on both domestic and international letters and packages weighing up to 20 kilograms.

Eesti Post´s head of the Postal Services Division, Kaido Padar, said that the last change in pricing was in 2011, and rising costs mean that the company will not be able to meet its budget at the current rates by November.

“Over the years, customers’ needs have changed,” said Padar, whose company now goes by Omniva in its international transactions. “Expanded opportunities for communication has led to a decline in letter volumes in the service, but the requirements of the universal postal service has remained the same.”

Padar said that the volume of mail has declined steadily in recent years, roughly 10 percent each year. Six years ago Eesti Post handled 60 million pieces of mail a year. That has declined to roughly half that figure.

Another factor in the planned price increase is due to the rising wages of 2,000 employees over the last two years. Estonia will raise the national minimum wage rate at the beginning of 2015, which means that the company needs to raise additional money to meet their wage obligations.

In addition, Padar said international transportation costs have increase by 5-10 percent, and increase in the fees paid to other postal companies have gone up 3-5 percent per year.

The price increase will not affect the price of parcels delivered to terminals in malls and supermarkets, such as the Post24 package machines.

Source: ERR News

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