Estonian islands get 4 new ferries

Construction of the four brand new ferries commissioned by the state-owned company Port of Tallinn to operate subsidized routes to Estonia’s large western islands is on track and the Turkish and Polish shipbuilders are to deliver the vessels in August next year.

“Construction of the new ferries is on track at the shipyards in Turkey and Poland alike, metalwork is being done, simultaneously work is being done to lay down plans for the vessels’ external design, interior design and ticket selling system,” Sirle Arro, head of the marketing and communication department at Port of Tallinn, told BNS.

“In some stages of construction, such as cutting of metal and ordering of material, they are even ahead of schedule. Our collaboration with the ships’ designer and the shipbuilders is altogether constructive,” Arro added.

Arro also said the port company expects all crew members of the ships currently sailing between the mainland and the western islands to apply for jobs on the new vessels.

On Oct. 31 last year Port of Tallinn signed contracts on the construction of four new passenger ferries for the routes between mainland Estonia and large western islands with Polish Remontowa Shipbuilding and Turkish Sefine Shipyard to build two ferries each.

The ferries are being built in shipyards located in Gdansk, Poland and Altinova/Yalova, Turkey. The 114 meters long vessels will accommodate 150 passenger cars or 12 road trains and have passenger places equipped with safety devices for 700 passengers. The new ferries are designed by the Norwegian company LMG Marin.

Source: BNS

Narva border checkpoint gets 7.5 mEUR makeover

The Narva-1 terminal cost 7.5 million euros to build and is three times the size of the old checkpoint.

The new terminal has eight lanes for pedestrians, 12 lanes for cars and two separate lanes for buses.

The refurbishment will speed up border crossing procedures for regular travelers and contribute to the development of tourism and entrepreneurship in Ida-Viru county.

“Narva checkpoint is one of the most important inland connection routes between the EU and Russia,” Estonian Minister of Internal Affairs Hanno Pevkur said. “The new checkpoint is no doubt a prerequisite for regional growth,” he continued, adding that the redevelopment is also of national importance.

The total cost of the terminal facilities – 7.5 million euros – was paid for by the European Neighborhood and Partnership Instrument (ENPI) and the Republic of Estonia.

Over 3.6 million people use the checkpoint every year to move between Estonia and Russia.

Source: ERR via Estonian Review

EU gives 30 mEUR to develop infrastructure of Helsinki-Tallinn maritime link

The ports of Helsinki and Tallinn together with the listed Estonian shipper AS Tallink Grupp have obtained 29.3 million euros in EU funding within the 2014 CEF Transport Multi-Annual Calls for proposals to finance their infrastructure investments.

The total cost of the planned investments is 97.6 million euros, the state owned company Port of Tallinn said on Monday.

The CEF (Connecting Europe Facility) program is a continuation to TEN-T, under which the initial TWIN-PORT project was started. The follow-up project is called TWIN-PORT II. The development of the Helsinki-Tallinn maritime link as part of the TEN-T North Sea-Baltic core corridor is of vital importance as it connects the northern parts of Europe with southern TEN-T corridors.

“This ongoing effective cooperation with Port of Helsinki and Tallink helps us to develop the link as a whole. It also supports the Twin City idea and the Rail Baltic project,” Ain Kaljurand, CEO of Port of Tallinn, said.

Kimmo Maki, CEO of Port of Helsinki, said the support for investment in the West Terminal building will have a significant impact on the comfort of passengers and smoothness of traffic on the whole Helsinki-Tallinn maritime link.

“The new LNG powered fast ferry will bring swift environment friendly operations to the busy Tallinn-Helsinki route. We are happy to see a successful collaboration between public and private companies that is supported by the European Union,” said Janek Stalmeister, chairman of the management board of Tallink Grupp.

The Helsinki-Tallinn line is one of the busiest international routes in the world, serving about eight million passengers per year, while trucks and trailers carry more than three million tons of cargo per year. The flows of traffic and passengers between the two ports have been constantly growing already for a decade. Therefore the project is crucial for both cargo and passenger flows to ensure smooth traffic between Helsinki and Tallinn.

According to the allocation of the support to develop the Helsinki-Tallinn maritime link from 2015-2018, Port of Helsinki will receive 19.2 million euros to develop traffic and port facilities related to Helsinki-Tallinn line traffic, which includes the new fast flow terminal, ramp constructions for the vessels, gate services and street connections. The total investment of Port of Helsinki amounts to 64 million euros.

Port of Tallinn stands to receive 5.3 million euros to develop several items in the Old City Harbor, such as the port’s sewage system to collect waste waters from ships, extension of terminal D, reconstruction of access to terminal A and connecting the terminals A and D, for a total investment of 17.6 million euros.

Tallink Grupp will receive 4.8 million euros to commission a new environmentally friendly LNG vessel costing 230 million euros to serve the Helsinki-Tallinn line starting from 2017. The investment under TWIN-PORT II is 16.0 million euros.

TWIN-PORT II will lead to maximum efficiency for this short sea line by optimizing port operations and infrastructure and will provide efficiency in a “door to door” approach, minimizing the costs and transit time, while increasing the cooperation and reliability of the transport service between Tallinn and Helsinki.

Source: BNS

EC to finance 82 percent of Rail Baltic project

European Commission has proposed financing the Rail Baltic high-speed railway in the extent of 82 percent which means that the three Baltic countries would have to finance the project with 97.2 million euros.

The European Commission announced on Monday it would grant the request of the Baltic countries for the financing of Rail Baltic in the amount of 540 million euros. Of that sum Estonia’s share would be 213 million euros, while Latvia is to get 281 million, Lithuania 28 million euros and the Rail Baltic joint venture 7 million euros, Rail Baltic project manager Miiko Peris said on Monday at a press conference. The resources can be used as of 2016.

According to Peris about 40 percent of the sum goes toward the preparation works and 60 percent would be used for railway construction.

The next Connecting Europe Facility financing round should take place at the end of the year and additional requests can be submitted for that, he added.

According to the initial schedule the railway should be ready by 2024 or 2025 and the period for using the support should last until that, Peris said. He added that submitting additional requests is definitely necessary.

“According to information known to us the Commission plans to carry out an additional financing round each year. The interest of the Baltic countries is to definitely take part in that but for that we have to show that the project is moving and activities are being carried out,” Peris said.

Source: Baltic News Service via Estonian Review

Port of Tallinn might need 3rd cruise ship quay

While finding its quay capacity to be sufficient for the next five years, Port of Tallinn does not rule out the possibility that a third quay for cruise ships will have to be built in addition to the 421-meter quay Number 2 completed at the Old City Port last spring.

Ain Kaljurand, CEO of the state-owned port company, told BNS he believes that the present quays provide the company with sufficient capacity to accept all cruise ships that wish to come here in the next five years.

Tallinn is capable already now to accept all cruise ships that can enter the Baltic Sea.

“If necessary, we can build additional quay-meters, we haven’t locked ourselves out in that respect with what we’ve built so far,” Kaljurand said.

He said cruise operators have had good words to say about the investments made by Port of Tallinn in cruise ship quays.

“We have understood that this is necessary, as ships have become bigger and our previous infrastructure would not have enabled us to accept all ships and we would have had to refuse some arrivals. And when you refuse one arrival, a snowball effect will follow and at one point you have missed tens of ships perhaps just because you refused one ship,” he said.

While it’s difficult to offer any forecasts as regards developments on the cruise market, right now this sector is in stable development and the Baltic Sea remains a popular destination, according to Kaljurand. Despite the sanctions and global crisis in a sense, there has been no sign of s setback,” he said.

He said executives of the port who recently arrived from the world’s largest cruise fair in Miami described the situation of the cruise market as quite the opposite to a crisis. “The Baltic Sea is generally very attractive for cruise operators and passengers. The Baltic Sea is made attractive first and foremost by St. Petersburg, without St. Petersburg we would definitely be marginal in terms of market share,” Kaljurand said.

Port of Tallinn expects 490,000 cruise tourists and 292 cruise ships to visit the Estonian capital in 2015. For the cruise port of Saaremaa Island six ship calls have been booked involving about 3,500 passengers. Pullmantur, which uses Tallinn as turnaround port, has cut the number of turnarounds here to three this year from five in previous seasons.

Source: BNS via Estonian Review

Estonian bus company demands the opening of Latvian transport market

The bus company Lux Express has started gathering signatures to a petition asking the Latvian government to open its domestic transport market.

According to Lux Express, the closed ticket system of domestic intercity connections in Latvia has caused stagnation in the transport sector.

Lux Express successfully operates domestic bus lines in Estonia and wishes to do the same in Latvia, its stands in the petition.

The number of passengers carried by buses of Lux Express Grupp grew almost 2.3-fold year over year to 1.65 million in 2014 and profit almost doubled to 2.5 million euros. Altogether 1,646,400 passengers travelled on routes operated by Lux express, compared with 718,200 in 2013, the increase being a result of the opening of both new international and domestic Estonian bus routes, the company said.

Source: BNS via Estonian Review

The carriage of passengers and goods declined in 2014

According to Statistics Estonia, in 2014, the number of passengers served by Estonian transport enterprises decreased by 2% and the freight volume in tonnes decreased by 5% compared to the previous year. Passenger traffic volume increased by 6% in passenger-kilometres, but freight turnover fell 15% in tonne-kilometres.

In 2014, the number of passengers carried by Estonian transport enterprises amounted to 211 million. 92.7% of these passengers were carried by road, 4.1% by sea, 2.8% by rail and 0.4% by air.

3% fewer passengers used road transport, compared to 2013. There were 195.6 million passengers in total and 85% of them, i.e. about 167 million passengers, used urban transport (i.e. buses, trams and trolleybuses). The number of passengers using county lines was about 17 million (up by 2% compared to 2013). National non-scheduled transport was used by 5 million passengers (up by one third). The number of passengers was 4.4 million on domestic highway lines (down by 2%) and 808,700 on international lines (up by 10%). In 2014, the passenger traffic volume of road transport enterprises decreased by 2% and was 2.6 billion passenger-kilometres.

In 2014, Estonian sea transport enterprises carried 8.7 million passengers, which is 1% less than in 2013. The number of passengers carried was 2.2 million in domestic sea traffic (up by 4%) and 6.5 million in international sea traffic (down by 3%). The passenger traffic volume of sea transport enterprises decreased by 4% and was nearly 1.2 billion passenger-kilometres in 2014.

Last year, with the arrival of new trains, the number of passengers using rail transport increased significantly. Around 5.9 million passengers were carried by rail, which is 41% more than in 2013. 5.8 million passengers were carried in domestic rail traffic (up by 43%) and 97,100 passengers were carried in international rail traffic (down by a fifth compared to 2013). The passenger traffic volume of rail transport enterprises increased by 26% and was 281.7 million passenger-kilometres.

In 2014, Estonian air transport enterprises carried 771,300 passengers. This is 1% more than in 2013. 17,800 passengers were carried in domestic air traffic (down by 7%) and 753,500 passengers were carried in international air traffic (up by 2%). The passenger traffic volume of air transport enterprises increased by 29% and was 1.4 billion passenger-kilometres in 2014. Scheduled passenger air transport decreased, but the increase in passenger turnover was due to the growth in charter flights.

In 2014, 75.1 million tonnes of goods were carried by Estonian transport enterprises, of which nearly 50% was carried by road, 48% by rail and 2% by sea.

Despite the overall decrease in goods transport volumes, road transport companies carried nearly 37.2 million tonnes of goods in 2014, which is 12% more than in 2013. 23.6 million tonnes of goods were transported in domestic road traffic and 13.6 million tonnes in international traffic. Freight turnover increased by 7% compared to 2013 and totalled 6.9 billion tonne-kilometres. There was a growth both in domestic transport and in international transport.

In 2014, the amount of goods carried by rail was nearly a fifth smaller than the year before, amounting to 36.3 million tonnes. The year-over-year decrease in freight volume in 2014 was the largest since 2007 and 2008. 20.1 million tonnes of goods were transported in domestic rail traffic and 16.2 million tonnes in international traffic. Freight turnover decreased by a third compared to 2013 and amounted to 3.3 billion tonne-kilometres.

Estonian sea transport enterprises carried 1.6 million tonnes of goods in 2014, which is 17% less than in 2013. The freight turnover in sea transport decreased by more than a half compared to 2013 and amounted to 425 million tonne-kilometres.

Estonian air transport enterprises carried 3,000 tonnes of cargo and the freight turnover was 1.8 million tonne-kilometres in 2014. Compared to 2013, there was 50% more cargo transported and freight turnover increased by 19%. Among the cargo transported by air, the carriage of postal shipments increased.

Carriage of passengers and goods

by transport enterprises, 2014

Passengers, millions Passenger traffic volume, billion pkm Freight, million tonnes Freight turnover, billion tkm
Total 211.0 5.5 75.1 10.6
Road transport 195.6 2.6 37.2 6.9
..urban transport 167.0 0.8
Rail transport 5.9 0.3 36.3 3.3
Sea transport 8.7 1.2 1.6 0.4
Air transport 0.8 1.4 0 0

– magnitude nilThe data of Estonian transport enterprises are collected and published according to the enterprise’s principal activity. The enterprise’s principal activity is determined based on the Estonian Classification of Economic Activities (EMTAK (NACE)): land transport (rail and road), water transport and air transport.

Passenger traffic volume is the volume of work done in the transport of passengers. It is measured in passenger-kilometres (pkm). One passenger-kilometre is the transport of one person across a distance of one kilometre.

Freight turnover is the volume of work done in the transport of goods. It is measured in tonne-kilometres (tkm). One tonne-kilometre is the transport of one tonne of goods across a distance of one kilometre.


Source: Statistics Estonia


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