Government reaches agreement on state budget strategy
The government on Wednesday reached an agreement on Estonia's budget strategy for 2018-2021, which will be the basis of the state's financial plans for the next four years.
Parent's pay system to be changed
The social ministry presented its parental benefits and leave reform package, Minister of Social Protection Kaia Iva believes could become law as early as next year, to the government yesterday. No decisions were made yesterday, however, and the cabinet is set to discuss the matter again in March.
10.02.2017, Tiina KaukverePM
Tax hikes in the pipeline
The general outline of the new coalition's tax policy had more or less taken shape behind closed doors by yesterday evening. It is very probable promises for the coming years will be covered with the help of new consumption taxes, and social and income tax hikes.
17.11.2016, Oliver KundPM
Editorial: do kick into gear, Mr Ossinovski
The deficit in Health Insurance Fund is shocking and shows the politicians are in a bigger hurry with systemic changes than we were guessing. Also, the state budget hole is likely to be deeper than envisioned.
Health Insurance Fund in the red by €33m
Convening to review first half year report, Estonia's Health Insurance Fund (HIF) is facing a budget deficit of €33m. They will fill the hole from the approximately €114m reserves of HIF but if the system continues the future is bleak as the fund is predicted to run out of the money in 2020.
19.08.2016, Joosep VärkPM
Study: the elderly see no point in saving money
A third of Estonia's elderly are unable to set money aside from monthly income. And those who are, do so to cover everyday expenses, shows a Turu-uuringute AS study.
11.08.2016, Andres ReimerPM
NATO squeezed by Kaliningrad bottleneck
Predicting occupation of Tallinn and Riga in less than 60 hours, a RAND Corporation report does underestimate Estonian defence capacity but points out the cold hard facts of gaping holes in deterrence capability of the Baltics which they believe need to be fixed latest by NATO summit in Warsaw.
16.02.2016, Oliver KundPM
Euro didn't raise the prices after all
Five years ago, soon after the retailers said euro would not raise the prices, the statement turned into a joke among the people. Just before the switch, chamber of commerce and industry initiated a campaign aimed at avoiding unsubstantiated rise of prices of goods and services while the euro was being adopted in 2011.
07.01.2016, Tõnis OjaPM
Temperature rising: eHealth heats up
Freshly out of his job, Estonian eHealth Foundation head Raul Mill accuses social ministry in hammering on with a reform potentially in violation with law. The ministry thinks the only way to make eHealth work is grabbing the wheel.
18.12.2015, Oliver KundPM
ERR says money lacking, fails to convince
A storm is brewing around budget of Public Broadcasting (ERR) which threatens to bin part of next year's live broadcasts and lay off staff. And yet the Riigikogu finance committee last night supported not the granting of 650,000 extra euros to ERR as the claims about lack of money are allegedly unclear.
13.11.2015, Oliver KundPM
Editorial: Europe, pay up for your defence
At NATO summit in Wales a year ago, all 28 members vowed to boost defence spending to a minimum of 2 percent of gross domestic produce in ten years. Think-tank Carnegie Europe's analysis «The Politics of 2 Percent: NATO and the Security Vacuum in Europe» compiled for its first anniversary finds the hope all reach the goal is overly optimistic. The analysis underlines the thus greater need to focus on what Europe needs to do to fill the vacuum.
Tallinn rocked by farmer power
Addressing the protest rally in front of the parliament building yesterday, Tartu County farmers chief Jaan Sõrra vowed to spread dung across the castle front should governing politicians fail to deliver on EU support as promised.
15.09.2015, Andres ReimerPM
Estonia under threat of forced aid to Greece
Though approved by Riigikogu's European Union Affairs Affairs Committee last Friday, financial aid for Greece within European Stability Mechanism (ESM) could just as well be forced upon us, say experts - and that in volumes prescribed by other members.
23.07.2015, Indrek MäePM
Stronger stick, sweeter carrot, and urge to merge
At the moment, Estonia sports 213 local governments. By our 100th Anniversary, they should be three times less. The conditions for survival of some and extinction of others are being feverishly forged.
16.07.2015, Oliver KundPM
Company car tax system repair required
The new value-added tax system applied to company cars last December failed to yield desired results – instead of the €47m expected, mere six million euros have been harvested at half year mark.
10.06.2015, Kadri HansaluPM
Editorial: a government taking its time to be born
The power trio is showing initial signs of ability to function. Sending the four year budget strategy for parliamentary discussions, they have finally expressed the actual tax amendments intended.
Puppet Theatre told to return €63,000 of grants
Independent audit finds Puppet Theatre must pay back part of EU project support not used expediently. The sum to be returned is €73,000 which for the theatre is one month’s salaries or the budget for a year’s worth of new productions.
27.02.2015, Hendrik AllaPM
Editorial: the pain and pleasure of predicting
Throughout the ages, predicting the future by the past and present has been a riveting pastime. Oh the oracles, the crystal balls, the soothsayers and the like. For the fans of stuff more sophisticated, try delving into the «Foundation» series by Isaac Asimov where genius-mathematician Hari Seldon invents a discipline for precision knowledge of the future – psychohistory. By the which he predicts the collapse of the Galactic Empire.
USA to pour $25m into Ämari Air Base
Among other allotments, 2015 budget for US Armed Forces earmarks close to $25m for structures at Ämari, Estonia. Latvia and Lithuanian are due a bit less than that, over $10m and $13m respectively for air bases in Lielvarde and Šiauliai.
22.12.2014, Evelyn KaldojaPM
Govt allocates EUR 8.4 mln for national defense
The Estonian government on Thursday decided to allocate 8.4 million euros from the reserve for urgent and one-time national defense expenses.
Editorial: Falling Rouble Blues
Yesterday, central bank of Russia announced of rate of rouble released – no longer having to wobble within a corridor as kept there by support buys while burning the precious cash reserves. To justify the step, avoidance of anti-rouble speculations was cited.
Tensions building between business and the state
When, this past spring, a bunch of amendments nasty towards businesses were pushed through in Riigikogu, it initially appeared that peace was unbroken. Turns out, the fire was just smouldering beneath ashes.
26.09.2014, Kadri HansaluPM
To every mouth a morsel
Predictably, the budget bill shaped with general elections in mind is cautious yet bursting with good news. In it, chief promises by both coalition buddies are fulfilled, such as the lowering of income tax rate (squirrels) and rising of child benefits (soc dems).
24.09.2014, Kadri HansaluPM
Near-zero economic growth now predicted
April saw finance ministry lower 2014 GDP growth forecast from 3.6 to 2 percent. According to what they released yesterday, it’s now down to mere 0.5. And, in risk-scenario, 0.3 is the number.
02.09.2014, Kadri HansaluPM
Doctors demand better pay
Collective agreement talks between medical workers and Hospitals Association are getting tough as the association deems demands by doctors to be Utopian.
01.09.2014, Tiina KaukverePM
Editorial: what’s the budget line for financing optimism?
It’s still summertime, but the signs of fall can’t quite be denied – note the occasional showers and birds of a feather flocking together. The joyful holiday faces of politicians as shining at Festival of Opinion Culture – the Arvamusfestival – in Paide recently will soon undergo a change in the corridors at Toompea, some to be thoughtful, some critical. As the Reformers and soc dems are hammering away at their first common budget, it takes no political or economic analyst to see – the task ain’t easy at all, in the current situation.
The budget brings quite a headache
Money «pre-eaten» by costly coalition promises and nearly nonexistent economic growth.
18.08.2014, Kadri HansaluPM
Editorial: the state vs the lawyer – a battle of principle
By its directive yesterday, justice ministry fired a resounding opening shot in its battle with Bar Association. The issue: how much must taxpayer pay to BA for it to provide legal assistance to people who can’t afford a lawyer?
Editorial: a shot in own foot
Not too long ago, in 2010, then President of Russian Federation Dmitri Medvedev paid a visit to USA. With colleague Barack Obama they rode into a hamburger stand in Virginia where the Russian head of state heartily bit into the symbol of American life: a fat white bread double-decker with steak, Cheddar cheese, onion, jalapeno-paprika and mushrooms. To say nothing about the inseparable Coca-Cola.
Cheap cigarette prices set for sudden jump
In a rare accord, Big Tobacco, taxpayers union and health activists agree that tobacco excise needs to primarily rise on the cheap cigarettes storming the market. That ought to make cigarettes harder to obtain for the youth. Today, the government will be deliberating the issue, as new coalition brings a new excise bill.
29.05.2014, Tuuli KochPM
Ukraine not reckoned in Estonian economic forecast
Probably, the freshly cut 2014 economic forecast by finance ministry is still too optimistic.
08.04.2014, Liina ValdrePM
Editorial: fresh wallpapers
Hopefully, the new government will not be spinning wheels over cosmetic change.
Pensions: sheepwalking towards barren pastures
«Only thanks to our decision to increase pensions by five percent during the crisis, has cohesion been preserved in our society,» Prime Minister Andrus Ansip proclaimed just before the last Riigikogu elections. «Pensions will definitely rise the next year as well!» Again, Reform Party took a solid victory at the elections.
28.02.2014, Sulev VedlerPM
Jürgen Ligi cranks up cost cutting machine
While we got accustomed to hear about Estonia’s financial affairs being in order, Minister of Finance Jürgen Ligi was forced to crank up the cutting machine again, making ministries chop off chunks of costs in coming years.
31.01.2014, Tuuli KochPM
Editorial: rules imply equal basis
State budget misses €24m, to find which various options are being weighed. A hefty income into state coffers does come from excises. Excises, collected by state from various products, is its way of letting people know – via their purse – which products are not as beneficial and advisable for them, thus for the state, as others.
State dumps beer millions
Government, headed by the ice drill finance minister Jürgen Ligi, is seeking a filling for a €24m hole in a budget otherwise among the most perfect in Europe.
05.12.2013, Tuuli KochPM
EU budget chief: Estonia proved a success-story
As assessed by Janusz Lewandowski, budget commissioner at European Union, Estonia gained an excellent position at the recent financial framework talks.
03.12.2013, Liina ValdrePM
Tallinn budget brings municipal shop
Tallinn city government yesterday confirmed 2014 budget now to be processed by council – three percent larger year-on-year.
28.11.2013, Uwe GnadenteichPM
Editorial: Europe approves budget to Estonia’s satisfaction
The 2014–2020 EU budget, stuck this spring due to resistance by European parliament, got its official OK yesterday.
EU approves its budget
Postponing decisions would have done damage to reputation of European Parliament, leaving lots of projects and people stuck in uncertainty.
20.11.2013, Argo IdeonPM
European Commission to inspect Estonian budget
This fall, for the first time in history, eurozone states are to present their budgets to be reviewed by European Commission.
10.10.2013, Liina ValdrePM
EU hits budget problems – again
Turns out, counterparties got it confused regarding agreement supposedly reached over budget this summer. The European Parliament may not ratify it in October, the entire process thus again delayed for months.
03.10.2013, Liina ValdrePM
Army to acquire self-propelled guns
Ministry of Defence next year investments will amount to €43.26m. Among other things, the ministry will initiate procurement for self-propelled guns and combat machines. The largest project launched will be building of five arracks: by year’s end, four barracks will be completed in Võru, Jõhvi and Ämari, plus another building renovated in Tallinn Mine Harbour (Miinisadam).
26.09.2013, Andres EinmannPM
Editorial: socially sensitive of fiscally optimistic?
Merrily sailing along sunny seas, phenomena like storms and reefs may easily be forgotten. Even so, an experienced sea wolf will occasionally glance over to the instruments. Hazards of the same sort also lurk beneath the surface of next year’s budget basically approved by government, yesterday. It’s elections eve. Politicians’ souls are bursting with longings to look kind and caring; meanwhile, clouds are forming in the macroeconomic skies.
Govt approves principles of Estonia's 2014 state budget
The Estonian government at its Cabinet sitting on Thursday approved in principle the draft of the state budget for 2014 showing revenues at 8.0 billion and expenditures at 8.1 billion euros.
Finmin describes Estonia's 2014 budget as moderately conservative
The Estonian government at its extraordinary Cabinet sitting on Tuesday continued discussion of the draft of the state budget for 2014, which Finance Minister Jurgen Ligi described as moderately conservative.
Estonia's state budget to grow 5 percent next year
The volume of Estonia's state budget will grow by more than 400 million euros or 5 percent in 2014.
City of Tallinn draws up EUR 2.5 mln second budget top-up
The city government of Tallinn has decided to hand to the city council the draft of a second supplementary budget that would increase this year's budget by 2.5 million euros.
Wage rise central to next year budget
Among other things, state budget talks will be revolving around wage rise for policemen, subsistence level lift, and courts reform.
29.08.2013, Tuuli KochPM
City of Tallinn's budget 50.9 pct full at the end of June
Receipts of the budget of the City of Tallinn in the first six months of the year totaled 236.9 million euros, equaling 50.9 percent of the target for the full year exclusive of financing activities.
Estonia's new state budget law to set down balance requirement
The Estonian Ministry of Finance is gathering public comments on a new state budget law that would set down the requirement of a balanced general government budget.
Govt's four-year budget strategy calls for continued prudence
The government on Thursday approved Estonia's budget strategy for the years 2014-2017 as well as a stability program, which call for sticking to a prudent fiscal policy and estimates revenues in the four-year period to total 33 billion euros.
Estonia takes in EUR 231.5 mln unpaid taxes with recovery proceedings
Altogether 231.5 million euros flew into the Estonian state budget as a result of tax recovery proceedings during 2012, whereas of current tax claims more than 90 percent were paid, tax officials said at a press conference on Tuesday.