Court freezes 25 pct of shares of Krediidipank

Acting on a claim filed by the Bank of Moscow, the Harju County Court has frozen 27.5% of shares of Eesti Krediidipank that are held on the security accounts of four companies: Olix Holdings, Lazuron Investments, Firmex Investeeringud and Genovia Invest.

Krediidipank announced that the shares were frozen in connection with the share transactions made by the former president of Bank of Moscow.

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Garment maker Bastion to expand to foreign markets

The garment maker Bastion, which has mainly operated in Estonia so far, is planning to increase turnover to 10 million euros in the next three years and to expand to foreign markets, the daily Postimees reported.

The turnover of the company has so far remained within a few million euros – it was 1.5 million euros in 2010 and 1.55 million euros in 2009.

CEO of Bastion Gert Stahl told the paper that the company could not hope for any more growth in Estonia. Next year the plan is to go to break into the British market. “We hope to establish an integrated retail and e-trade unit that should support each other,” he said.

After the British business has been geared, the company is planning expansion to Germany, the Netherlands, Denmark, and Belgium.

In order to grow turnover and profit, the company is planning to come out with a new trade mark, Beself. New designers and marketing people who have contributed to the creation of the trade mark have come to the company.
 

Source: Estonian Review

Estonia’s average salary 792 euros in 2010

According to Statistics Estonia, in 2010, the average monthly gross wages and salaries were 792 euros (12,397 kroons) and the hourly gross wages and salaries were 4.78 euros (74.84 kroons). Compared to 2009, the average monthly gross wages and salaries were by 1.1% higher and the average hourly gross wages and salaries were by 0.4% lower.

The year 2009 was exceptional as the annual average monthly gross wages and salaries decreased for the first time during the last 16 years compared to the previous year. In 2010, the fall turned to a growth again. At the same time, the annual average monthly gross wages and salaries in 2010 were smaller than in 2008 when the wages and salaries were the highest so far.

The real wages which took into account the influence of the change in the consumer price index and which shows the purchasing power of wages and salaries, decreased for the second year in succession, but at a slower pace. In 2009 the real wages decreased by 4.9%, in 2010 by 1.8%.

In 2010 compared to the previous year, the average monthly gross wages and salaries increased the most in mining and quarrying (11.6%) and decreased the most in real estate activities (14.4%).

In 2010 compared to the previous year, the average hourly gross wages and salaries increased the most in professional, scientific and technical activities (6.4%) and decreased the most in real estate activities (15.8%).

In 2010, the average monthly gross wages and salaries in public sector were 821 euros (12,850 kroons) and in private sector 780 euros (12,211 kroons). Compared to the previous year, the average monthly gross wages and salaries in public sector decreased by 0.5% and in private sector increased by 1.6%. Public sector also includes companies owned by the state or local government.

In 2010, the employer’s average monthly labour costs per employee were 1,074 euros (16,812 kroons) and the average hourly labour costs were 7.22 euros (112.95 kroons). Compared to 2009, the average monthly labour costs per employee increased by 0.7% and the average hourly labour costs decreased by 1.5%.

In 2010, the average monthly labour costs per employee increased the most in mining and quarrying (11.2%), and decreased the most in real estate activities (13.6%).

In 2010, the average hourly labour costs increased the most in professional, scientific and technical activities (5.7%) and decreased the most in real estate activities (14.8%).

Statistics Estonia conducts the survey of wages and salaries statistics on the basis of international methodology since 1992. In 2010, the sample included 11,685 enterprises, institutions and organisations. The average monthly gross wages and salaries have been given in full time units to enable a comparison of different wages and salaries, irrespective of the length of working time. Calculations of the monthly gross wages and salaries are based on payments for actually worked time and remuneration for time not worked. The hourly gross wages and salaries do not include remuneration for time not worked (holiday leave pay, benefits, etc.). In short term statistics, the average gross wages and salaries are measured as a component of labour costs. Labour costs include gross wages and salaries, employer’s contributions and employer’s imputed social contributions to employees.

Average monthly gross wages and salaries, 1st quarter 2007– 1st quarter 2011 (euros)
  Year 1st quarter 2nd quarter 3rd quarter 4th quarter
2007 724 660 738 697 784
2008 825 788 850 800 838
2009 784 776 813 752 783
2010 792 758 822 759 814
2011   792      


Average monthly gross wages and salaries and monthly labour costs per employee, 2010

Diagram: Average monthly gross wages and salaries and monthly labour costs per employee, 2010


Average hourly gross wages and salaries and hourly labour costs, 2010

Diagram: Average hourly gross wages and salaries and hourly labour costs, 2010

Source: Statsitics Estonia

Singing is the most popular activity among young

According to Statistics Estonia, the most active practitioners of amateur cultural activities in Estonia are the 10–24-year-old young people, among whom singing is the most popular activity.

According to the Time Use Survey, 83% of the 10–24-year-olds were involved in some amateur cultural activity in 2010. Among the youth, more active practitioners were those aged below 18, of whom 56% practiced some amateur cultural activity at least once a week. 44% of the people aged 18–24 were active practitioners. 17% of the 10–24-year-olds practiced singing at least once a week. 14% of the persons in this age group practiced dancing, 13% – fine arts and 12% played a musical instrument.

Tartu county had the biggest share of youth involved in amateur cultural activities and Ida-Viru county had the smallest share (94% and 66%, respectively). The share of active young practitioners of amateur cultural activities i.e. those who practiced a cultural activity at least once a week was the largest in Hiiu county and the smallest in Ida-Viru county (70% and 29%, respectively).

With advancing age, the share of people practicing amateur cultural activities decreases and the share of those, who do not practice any such activity at all, increases. Among the 25–64-year-olds there were 74% of those practicing some kind of amateur cultural activity and, among persons aged 65 or older the respective proportion was 56%.

Young practitioners of amateur cultural activities by county, 2010
(percentage among the 10–24-year-olds of the county)

Diagram: Young practitioners of amateur cultural activities by county, 2010

Source: Statistics Estonia

Non-profit sector invested 116 MEUR in R&D

Estonia’s non-profit institutional sectors spent a total of 116 million euros on research and development last year, which marks an increase of 6% in annual comparison, data of the national statistics agency show.

Outlays on research and development activities grew by 6% to 88.5 million euros in the education sector and by 13% to 24.6 million euros in the government sector.

In the non-profit private sector, R&D spending shrank by 32% year-on-year to 2.9 million euros.

Source: Estonian Review

State budget 44.5 pct full after 5 months

In the first five months of this year 2.54 billion euros of revenue was paid into Estonia’s state budget, which makes up 44.5% of the target for the full year, Finance Ministry data show.

Five-month expenditures totalled 2.49 billion euros or 40.2% of the outlays projected for 12 months, the ministry said. The general government sector ran a deficit of 28.7 million euros or 0.18% of gross domestic product in the January-April period, which is 283 million euros less than a year earlier. The four-month shortfall in 2010, at 311.8 million euros, corresponded to 2.15% of GDP. The substantial narrowing of the gap is due to the sale of emission quotas, among other things, as at the same time last year none of the proceeds from transactions had come in yet, the ministry said.

In the ministry’s view, budget performance in the five months meets expectations. Of the five-month budget receipts, 1.63 billion euros was tax revenue and 913.7 million euros non-tax income. May inflow was 575 million euros, 10.1% of the 12-month target.

Source: Estonian Review

Foreign ministry supports global education in schools

The Foreign Ministry has allocated 19 608 euros to support a project of Humana Estonia that aims to increase the number of topics related to global and development education that are taught in Estonian schools. The project will include the teaching of the principles of global and development education as early as pre-school, with the goal of cultivating a feeling of solidarity in children and expanding their worldview.

Foreign Minister Urmas Paet stated that an interest in the cultures, religions, and customs of other countries helps people to better understand their place in the world. “This is why it is important to grant more attention to global education in Estonia,” he added.

The Humana Estonia project will introduce the principles and values of global education to primary school instructors and university students that are studying to become primary school teachers. The projects will also be geared towards professors who could tie global education themes into their lectures and seminars.

Global education is a learning process in which the principal values are solidarity, equality, inclusion, and co-operation. Global education gets individuals to understand the causes and effects of globalisation and to become familiar with the primary international development goals and human development concepts, creating an opportunity for them to make their own contribution and be active citizens.
 

Source: Estonian Review

Estlink operator earns 1.07 MEUR profit in 9 months

AS Nordic Energy Link, operator of the Estlink undersea power cable between Estonia and Finland, earned a net profit of 16.8 million kroons (EUR 1.07 mln) on sales of 151.7 million kroons during the period from 1 April to 31 December 2010.

In November 2010 the shareholders of Nordic Energy Link decided to adopt the period from 1 January to 31 December as the financial year instead of the financial year running from 1 April to 31 March. Because of that the financial year that started on 1 April of that year lasted only nine months, it appears from the consolidated annual report signed by board member Gunnar Virk.

In the previous financial year, which ran from April 2009 to the end of March 2010, Nordic Energy Link earned a profit of 18.8 million kroons on sales of 284 million kroons.

Nordic Energy Link’s sole employee during the financial year was one board member, whose remuneration amounted 366 000 kroons.

Of the shares of Nordic Energy Link, 39.9% belong to Eesti Energia, 25% to Latvenergo, 25% to Lietuvos Energija, and 10.1% to Finestlink Oy of Finland. Nordic Energy Link owns the Finnish company N.E.L. Finland Oy.

Source: Estonian Review

Port of Tallinn receives 33 pct more cruise passengers in May

The port of Tallinn received 60 861 cruise passengers in the first month of the traditional cruise season that kicked off on 1 May, which marks a year-on-year increase of 32.8%.

In the January-May period 72 270 cruise passengers visited the port, an increase of 38.9% compared to the same period a year ago, statistics of the port show.

All told 741 055 passengers passed through the port of Tallinn in May, of whom 433 849 or 66% used the services of the listed shipper Tallink Grupp. During the same month last year Tallink served 65% of all passengers.

Viking Line and Eckero Line had 155 308 and 85 179 passengers, respectively, last month. Viking Line’s share of passenger turnover at Tallinn port was 21% and Eckero Line’s 11%, unchanged from last year.

The state-owned port operator Tallinna Sadam and Russian shipper St. Peter Line started operating a regular ferry route between St. Petersburg, Stockholm and Tallinn on 3 April. The shipper had 5 709 passengers in the second month of operation.

Since the beginning of the year 2.9 million passengers have passed through the port of Tallinn, an increase of 7.2% in annual comparison.

Source: Estonian Review

Logging in Estonia grows 43 pct in 2010

The volume of logging in Estonian forests according to cutting documents soared 43% last year to 10.47 million cubic meters, and the area of cutting increased by 27% to 131 128 hectares, data of the national statistical office show.

Last year’s cutting volume is the largest in the last two decades. In the 2000-2010 period the volumes of logging according to cutting documents fluctuated between 5.1 million and 7.4 million cubic meters.

In state-owned forests the volume of cutting increased by 11% to 3.34 million cubic meters and in privately-owned forests, by 64% to 6.99 million cubic meters. Clear cutting amounted to 7.92 million cubic meters and improvement cutting, to 2.17 million cubic meters.

Regeneration was carried out on 8 821 hectares, including reforestation of 6 366 hectares. Spruce was planted on 4 645 hectares, pine on 1 186 hectares and birch on 503 hectares of forestland.

Source: Estonian Review