Carriage of goods increased in rail transport

According to Statistics Estonia, in 2017, the number of passengers served by Estonian transport enterprises remained at the same level compared to the previous year. Carriage of goods decreased in road transport, but increased in rail transport.

In 2017, the number of passengers carried by Estonian transport enterprises amounted to 208.3 million, with the majority carried by road. In road transport (incl. trams and trolley buses), there were approximately as many passengers carried as in 2016, but the number of passengers increased in sea, rail and air transport. In 2017, the passenger traffic volume of transport enterprises was 5.9 billion passenger-kilometres, and it increased by 9% compared to 2016.

Bus transport enterprises served 190.4 million passengers in 2017, and 87% of them, i.e. approximately 165.4 million passengers, used urban transport (incl. trams and trolleybuses). Urban transport was used almost as much as in 2016. The number of passengers was approximately 14.9 million on county lines (5% less compared to 2016), 4.1 million on domestic long-distance lines (down by 3%) and approximately 1.4 million on international lines (up by 12%). In 2017, the passenger traffic volume of road transport was approximately 2.9 billion passenger-kilometres, and it decreased in domestic traffic by 6% and increased in international bus transport by 7%.

In 2017, Estonian sea transport enterprises carried 9.4 million passengers, which is 3% more than in 2016. The number of passengers carried in domestic sea traffic was 2.5 million (up by 7%) and roughly 7 million (up by 2%) in international sea traffic. The passenger traffic volume of sea transport enterprises increased by 13% year on year, and was nearly 1.3 billion passenger-kilometres in 2017. International sea traffic contributed 98% of the passenger traffic volume.

Last year 7.4 million passengers were carried by rail, which is 7% more than in 2016. In domestic rail traffic, 7.3 million passengers were carried (up by 7%), and 107,400 passengers in international rail traffic (up by 4%). The passenger traffic volume of rail transport enterprises increased by 16% year on year, totalling 366.7 million passenger-kilometres in 2017.

In 2017, Estonian air transport enterprises carried 946,700 passengers. Compared to 2016, this is 66% more. 61% of the passengers were carried on regular flights. The passenger traffic volume of air transport enterprises increased by 38% year on year, and was approximately 1.3 billion passenger-kilometres.

According to preliminary estimates, in 2017, Estonian road freight vehicles and rail, sea and air transport enterprises carried a total of 55.2 million tonnes of goods, of which a half was carried by road and nearly a half by rail. The preliminary estimate for freight turnover in 2017 is nearly 8.6 billion tonne-kilometres.

According to preliminary estimates, Estonian road freight vehicles carried approximately 27.7 million tonnes of goods in 2017, which is a fifth less than in 2016. The volume of freight in tonnes fell mainly in the second half of the year. 21.9 million tonnes of goods were transported in domestic road traffic (down by 21%) and 5.8 million tonnes in international traffic (down by 17%). The freight turnover of road transport vehicles decreased by 13% compared to 2016, and totalled 5.9 billion tonne-kilometres.

In 2017, the volume of goods carried by rail was 7% larger than the year before, amounting to 27.3 million tonnes. 18.1 million tonnes of goods were transported in domestic rail traffic (up by 15%), with the majority contributed by oil shale transport. 9.2 million tonnes of goods were transported in international traffic (down by 5% compared to 2016). Year on year, freight turnover of rail transport decreased by 1%, and amounted to 2.3 billion tonne-kilometres. Of international rail freight transport, 7.6 million tonnes were goods in transit, imports amounted to 1.3 million tonnes and exports to 0.3 million tonnes. Carriage of goods in transit by rail decreased again by 5% year on year, mainly due to a decrease in the carriage of liquid refined petroleum products. Import goods were carried 7% less and export goods 23% more than in 2016.

The data of Estonian transport enterprises are collected and published according to the enterprise’s main economic activity. The enterprise’s main economic activity is determined based on the Estonian Classification of Economic Activities (EMTAK (NACE Rev. 2)): land transport (rail and road), water transport and air transport.

Road transport of passengers includes bus, trolleybus and tram transport. Urban transport includes passenger transport by buses, trams and trolleybuses.

Road transport data for 2017 are estimated based on the data of the statistical activity ”Transport of goods by road”. Road freight vehicles registered in the traffic register of the Road Administration which are not older than 25 years and have a loading capacity of over 3,500 kg are observed. The revised data are published upon adding data for the following period.

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.

For the statistical activities on transport, the main representative of public interest is the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications, commissioned by whom Statistics Estonia collects and analyses the data necessary for performing these statistical activities.

Source: Statistics Estonia

Tallinn-Tartu trip to take under two hours by train

Extensive repairwork on the railway connnecting Tallinn and Tartu is scheduled to be completed soon, after which a trip via train between Estonia’s two biggest cities will shorten to under two hours in length.

Beginning Dec. 4, or next Sunday, Elron will no longer have to employ connecting shuttle buses between Tallinn-Rapla and Tapa-Tartu.

On Dec. 11, however, Elron will be launching a new train schedule which will include one additional express train departure each on its Tallinn-Tartu and Tartu-Tallinn routes.

According to the new schedule, the trip should take less than two hours via express train, a decrease from its current average time of two hours and ten minutes; its local trains, which stop at all stations along the route, are also slated to begin making the trip faster than their current approximate time of two hours and 40 minutes.

Source: ERR News

Minister in hot water over insulting Lithuanians

Estonian Minister of Economic Affairs Juhan Parts is in the middle of a diplomatic row, after Wall Street Journal published a blog posting where Parts was quoted as saying that certain Lithuanian government members were “fools”.

Parts has used the Estonian word “jobud” to describe the Lithuanian government for recent demands made on Rail Baltic, the joint infrastructure project to connect the Baltics to the European rail system.

According to Parts, such demands are slowing down the progress and are putting the whole venture at risk.

Read more from BBN

Estonia’s passenger rail traffic may come to standstill

Edelaraudtee, Estonian private rail passenger carrier, threatens to stop all passenger rail traffic from next year, writes ERR.

The company’s lawyers said that if the court upholds the decision of the public procurement dispute committee that declared null and void the directly awarded contract between the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Elektriraudtee with which the state gave all the railway passenger transport management starting from 2014 to Elektriraudtee without holding a competition, all passenger rail traffic would come to a standstill.

Read more from BBN

Lithuania being investigated for cutting Latvian link

The European Commission has launched formal antitrust proceedings against the Lithuanian state-owned railway company Lietuvos gelezinkeliai (LG) for removing a rail link between Latvia and Lithuania, reported news2biz LITHUANIA.

In late 2008, Lietuvos gelezinkeliai dismantled the Lithuanian leg of the rail tracks connecting Renge station in Latvia to Mazeikiai in Lithuania, following an order from the Lithuanian government. It claimed that the track was in bad condition and could cause an accident. It has not reopened the route since.

Both Orlen ( a Polish-owned oil refinery) and Latvian state-owned rail company Latvijas Dzelzcels complain that Lithuania’s move is aimed at protecting its own transport companies at the expense of their competitors.

Read more from BBN

Estonians will enjoy Swiss trains worth 96 MEUR

The Estonian passenger operaator Elektriraudtee AS (Electric Railway) and the Swiss train manufacturer Stadler Bussnang AG presented the first two units of the major order of diesel and electric trains placed with Stadler by Estonia.

Elektriraudtee said that the trains, designed for the climatic conditions of Estonia, will enter operation in June 2013. Both units have a top speed of 160 kilometers per hour.

The public tender of Elektriraudtee to buy 18 electric and 20 diesel trains was announced in 2009 and contracts with the winning bidder were signed in August 2010.

The electric trains cost approximately 80 million euros, 85% of which is provided by the EU Cohension Fund. The diesel trains cost 96 million euros and will go to Elektriraudtee under a capital lease arrangement.

Under the government’s decision the state-owned Elektriraudtee, currently the operator of electric shuttle trains to and from Tallinn, will provide passenger service all over Estonia starting from 2014.

Source: Estonian Review

Go Rail launches Tallinn-St Petersburg train service

International passenger transport company Go Rail launches the Tallinn-St Petersburg train route on May 27.

Go Rail’s Tallinn-St Petersburg train will have one trip a day in each direction, departing at 7.03 a.m. from Tallinn and 7.32 p.m. from St Petersburg. The travelling time is 7 hours.

AS Go Rail operates also Tallinn-Moscow trains.

Read more from BBN

Cargo carriage by rails grows 17 pct in 2010

Last year a total of 29.63 million tons of freight was carried on tracks of Estonia’s state-owned railway company Eesti Raudtee which marks a year-on-year increase of 16.9%.
Some 2.83 million tons of the total fell into December, up by 15.7% in annual comparison, Eesti Raudtee said.
The overall rail freight volume showed a year-on-year growth of 12%, totalling 6.26 billion net ton kilometers.
Oil and oil products accounted for nearly 69% or 20.36 million tons of the freight turnover, increasing by 15.9% compared to the previous year. Domestic oil shale shipments doubled in annual comparison, reaching 3.69 million tons. Rail haulage of fertilizers also showed robust growth, amounting to 2.24 million tons.
A decline of 34%, to 1.33 million tons, occurred in the carriage of coal. Decreases were also recorded in bulk goods, which contracted by 33% in annual comparison to 0.57 million tons, and in chemical goods, which dropped more than 13% to 0.4 million tons.
Transit shipments accounted for 80.5% of the rail freight volume in 2010, growing by 13.7% from the previous year.
Domestic shipments amounted to 4.25 million tons, up by more than 50% against 2009. Export shipments increased by 8.7% to 0.61 million tons. In import shipments the freight volume was 0.92 million tons, down by 7% year-on-year.
Looking at cross-border haulage, 23.58 million tons of goods or 9.6% more than a year earlier was transported into Estonia by rail last year. Outward-bound rail freight totalled 1.81 million tons, representing a year-on-year increase of 73%.
Container carriage by rail totalled 22 394 TEU, nearly 40% more than in 2009. Almost half the containers went to Russia with shipments to that country growing by 16%.

Source: Estonian Review

Tallinn – Warsaw trains could start running in 2012

Estonia’s minister of economic affairs said after meeting with colleagues from Latvia and Lithuania and European Commission officials in Brussels on Dec.2, 2010 that it is time for the countries to proceed from words to deeds when it comes to passenger train traffic between Tallinn and Warsaw, and the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications believes that trains could start running in 2012.
Estonia considers it important and realistic to restore passenger train traffic on the existing Rail Baltica route in the near future using the automatic track gauge change technique on the border between Lithuania and Poland. Trains could realistically travel at 120 kilometers per hour on the existing infrastructure, the minister said.
“Estonia has with the support of the European Union invested hundreds of millions of kroons in Rail Baltica and is ready to move ahead with this project. This calls for a concrete contribution from other parties as well,” the minister said.
According to the ministry’s information, Latvia and Lithuania backed the Estonian initiative and confirmed their readiness to make a contribution to restoring train traffic.
The Estonian minister of economic affairs and communications, Juhan Parts, said that thousands of tourists arrive in Estonia daily from Finland and Russia looking for opportunities to continue their journey. “We need to think more broadly in terms of geography and look forward, think about our children,” he said.
The ministers agreed in the meeting that a detailed action plan for opening passenger train traffic on the Rail Baltica route between Tallinn, Riga, Kaunas, Bialystok and Warsaw will be mapped out by rail operators in co-operation with government representatives and the work will be co-ordinated by the European Commission. The first meeting was scheduled for January.
In the process of reforming the EU’s transport networks policy it is necessary to make Rail Baltica a part of the bloc’s core transport network, the Ministry of Economy and Communications said. This would ensure possible investments in the new budget period 2014-2020. Estonia will together with EU support invest close to 1.3 billion kroons (EUR 83.1 mln) in Rail Baltica in 2008-2011.

Source: Estonian Review

Rail cargo transport increased by 15 pct

Rail cargoes transported using the infrastructure of the state-owned Estonian company Eesti Raudtee (Estonian Railway) during the first nine months of this year amounted to 21.42 million tons, which is 15.1% more than in the same period a year ago.
In September rail freight totalled 2.4 million tons, which marks a year-on-year increase of 11.4%, Eesti Raudtee said.
During the nine months rail shipments of liquid mineral fuels totalled 14.86 million tons, 12.5% more than a year earlier. Haulage of oil shale soared 85% to 2.44 million tons. Fertilizer shipments increased 75% to 1.6 million tons. Of solid mineral fuels, bulk goods and ferrous metals 1.03 million tons, 0.42 million tons and 0.29 million tons were shipped, respectively.
Transit, at 17.43 million tons, accounted for 81.4% of total shipments and saw a year-on-year increase of 12.7%. Local shipments totalled 2.89 million tons, up by 41% year on year. Import shipments decreased 13% to 0.66 million tons while export shipments increased 24.7% to 0.44 million tons.
The leading haulers were E.R.S. and EVR Cargo, accounting respectively for 57% and 43% of total tonnage.

Source: Estonian Review