Estonia's public administration minister resigns over NATO remarks
Estonia's Minister of Public Administration Mihhail Korb on Wednesday filed for his resignation from the Cabinet post in connection with the remarks about Estonia's NATO membership made by him during a meeting with war veterans the day before.
Government to allocate €8 million to Haapsalu railroad
After a week's discussion, the government approved Estonia's transport infrastructure investments plan for 2018-2020 yesterday. The plan will concentrate on the Tallinn-Pärnu highway and the Tallinn and Kärdla airports. Construction of the Haapsalu railroad is also included in the plan. The government will be investing an additional €135 million into transport connections.
12.05.2017, Georgi BeltadzePM
Economic policy leaning to the left
Even though the economic policy of PM Jüri Ratas' government leans more to the left than those of his predecessors, there is no cause to talk about a clear left turn in Estonia, sociologists conclude.
09.05.2017, Kristi MalmbergPM
Security starts with family
Head of the Center Party and the government Jüri Ratas believes that population concerns need to be addressed to ensure security. „Security is needed for a people and country; however, what is a country with no people?“ he asks.
03.05.2017, Joosep VärkPM
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.
Sickly looking at civilian service
An interior ministry plan that has been cooking for two years would have young men deemed physically unfit for military service undergo 12-14 months of civilian service instead. The aim of the system already in use in Switzerland, Norway, and Israel would be to secure Estonia with a reserve of specialists in other fields besides the military in case of crises.
17.04.2017, Oliver KundPM
Budget deficit a possibility again
The cabinet has decided to relax the strict fiscal balance dogma of recent years. President of the Bank of Estonia Ardo Hansson perceives several dangers.
06.04.2017, Lennart RuudaPM
Trucks to pay up to €1,300 in road usage charge
The government approved on Thursday a road usage fee for trucks that could cost operators of heavier and more polluting vehicles up to €1,300 annually.
31.03.2017, Lennart RuudaPM
Gov. reaches compromise for security academy
Just as it happened in 2014, the government decided, after months of debates, not to move the Estonian Academy of Security Sciences to the border town of Narva yesterday. The town will host a training center that will be known as an academy college instead.
31.03.2017, Andres EinmannPM
Palo wants to take over development of Ida-Viru County
Minister of Enterprise Urve Palo wants to take the Ida-Viru County national development program away from Minister of State Administration Mihhail Korb as she finds the current plan is unable to kick-start life in the region.
27.03.2017, Lennart RuudaPM
Beer giants fail to change government's mind
Parent companies of Estonian breweries said after meeting with PM Jüri Ratas yesterday that because the government will not drop its plan of hiking excise duties ahead of schedule, breweries will just have to adjust and dial back investments in the long run.
15.03.2017, Lennart RuudaPM
Justice ministry leaves the decision to the government
The justice ministry reports that the working group failed to reach a common position on moving the academy during its previous meeting.
13.03.2017, Oliver KundPM
Analysis: Moving the internal security academy expensive and risky
Moving the Estonian Academy of Security Sciences to Narva will cost approximately €10 million more than previously estimated. A number of teachers are likely to leave the school and certain specialties might not have enough students should the move plan be realized.
13.03.2017, Oliver KundPM
Next president could be decided by electoral body
A coalition working group on changes to the presidential election process is weighing a constitutional amendment that would abolish the current Riigikogu voting rounds and give the task of electing the president straight to the electoral body.
21.02.2017, Karin KangroPM
18 Syrian refugees have arrived in Estonia in February
In February 18 Syrian war refugees have arrived in Estonia from Greece and Turkey, while so far 107 refugees have arrived in Estonia under the European Union's migrant resettlement and relocation plan.
Center Party again tops popularity ratings in February
Estonia's most popular party in February was the Center Party which was supported by 27 percent of respondents, results of a survey commissioner by BNS and the daily Postimees and carried out by pollster Kantar Emor show.
Hiding alcohol to cost millions
Larger shops will have to move alcohol out of sight in the coming years. Retail chains say compliance with the regulation requires them to build opaque partitions that requires short-term investments stretching into millions.
02.02.2017, Lennart RuudaPM
Estonian ex-president gets prize of Bertelsmann Foundation
Bertelsmann Foundation of Germany has decided to give this year's Reinhard Mohn Prize to Toomas Hendrik Ilves, former president of Estonia, for his pioneering work on the promotion of digitalization in government, education and public services.
Pentus-Rosimannus possibly involved with Arsenal
Mere months before state real estate manager RKAS took possession of the Arsenal center properties to put them up for auction the following year, the agency's supervisory board included, in addition to former PM Taavi Rõivas, Rain Rosimannus' wife Keit Pentus-Rosimannus.
25.01.2017, Lennart RuudaPM
Ossinovski drops gas stations alcohol ban
Even though Minister of Health Care and Labor Jevgeni Ossinovski said alcohol would disappear from gas stations as recently as late December, the ministry has now introduced draft legislation that does not include the ban and exempts small shops from moving alcohol out of sight. Changes will, however, ban alcohol advertisements on social media.
25.01.2017, Hanneli RudiPM
Shadow of corruption over Arsenal center
A Riigikogu select committee is set to look into sale of land under the Arsenal shopping center in North Tallinn part of which is owned by entrepreneur and Reform Party member Rain Rosimannus.
24.01.2017, Lennart RuudaPM
Pension to depend on years worked
The government decided yesterday to change the system of pensions to tie I pillar pension to years worked instead of level of income. Ministers also reached an agreement on the special pensions reform that will abolish special pensions of Defense Forces members, prosecutors, police and border guard officials from January 1, 2020. All current special pensions and those of people who take office before December 31, 2019 will be retained.
20.01.2017, Hanneli RudiPM
Kotka says government in the way of innovation
Outgoing Deputy Chancellor of the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications in charge of communication and national information systems, long-time ambassador of the Estonian innovation scene Taavi Kotka has decided to throw down the gauntlet and explicitly accuse the government of slowing down innovation.
19.01.2017, Aivar PauPM
Eight firearms new maximum
The Ministry of Internal Affairs has sent to the Government Office a bill to amend the Weapons Act, according to which individuals holding a weapons permit and owning firearms for the purpose of protection of self and property can own a maximum of eight firearms.
17.01.2017, Piret LaksonPM
Time of county governments will soon be over
The time of county governments will soon be over, Estonian Prime Minister Juri Ratas said in an opinion piece published in the regional daily Meie Maa on Wednesday.
Estonian minister eyeing graduated-rate tax on sugary drinks
Estonia's Minister of Health and Labor Jevgeni Ossinovski intends to impose the tax on sugar-sweetened beverages as a graduated-rate tax and not to levy the tax on dairy products and beverages containing naturally occurring sugars, Postimees said.
27.12.2016, News.postimees.ee / BNSPM
Estonian govt endorses ban on free handout of plastic bags in stores
The Estonian government on Thursday gave its nod to a bill of the Ministry of Environment which forbids free handouts of plastic carrier bags in stores as of 2019.
Government scored half a victory in administrative reform case
Yesterday’s Supreme Court ruling definitely showed the green light for the forced merger of municipalities, but on the other hand this complicates the merger of municipalities based purely on the minimum limit of 5,000 residents.
21.12.2016, Nils NiitraPM
Free Party proposes ministerial suitability criteria
The Riigikogu faction of the Free Party introduced a bill yesterday that would prescribe clear suitability criteria for ministers and obligate the president to refuse to appoint ministers who do not meet said criteria and could therefore undermine the credibility of state authority.
16.12.2016, Piret LaksonPM
How to spin political money
The internal security service and the prosecution believe they have cracked former Tallinn mayor and Center Party head Edgar Savisaar's alleged Swiss money laundering scheme.
14.12.2016, Oliver KundPM
Estonian finmin wants to allow drawing up state budgets with structural deficit
Estonian Finance Minister Sven Sester wants to draw up state budgets in the future in a way that if a small structural deficit should occur, it could be covered with a structural surplus in the following years, and the government is to discuss the proposal at the beginning of next year.
Estonian PM: Govt's 100 days' program sets out 98 tasks
The Estonian government on Thursday endorsed the program for its first 100 days in office, which sets out 98 tasks.
Estonian farm minister resigns after less than 2 weeks on the job
Estonia's Minister of Rural Affairs Martin Repinski handed his letter of resignation to Prime Minister Juri Ratas on Tuesday, less than two weeks after the new government was sworn in on Nov. 23.
Reps to take care of Russian schools
Let it be said right away that talk of Mailis Reps' ambition to secure the position of justice minister was, according to her, mere speculation as the Pro Patria Res Publica Union (IRL) was dead set on reserving that position for Urmas Reinsalu from the first. The Center Party's 41-year-old deputy chairman becoming education minister once more was rather a last minute outcome.
05.12.2016, Anneli AmmasPM
Offer that couldn't be refused
Even though the position of social protection minister came at an inconvenient time for Kaia Iva, she felt it would no be right to turn it down, and she will have to accept the title of the Pro Patria Res Publica Union's (IRL) first female minister.*
02.12.2016, Tiina KaukverePM
Estonian defense forces to stage snap reserve exercise for 300
The Estonian defense forces will stage an extraordinary reservist training event from Dec. 2-5 as part of which more than 300 members of the 433rd infantry company of the Voru district of the Kaitseliit volunteer corps and reservists of the headquarters company who finished their conscript service in 2014 will be called up.
The era of crossing out spreadsheet entries is over
Minister of Internal Affairs Andres Anvelt promises to update the system instead of pursuing austerity for the sake of austerity in the field of internal security. He says that Estonia should restore community police, give municipal police more powers, and allow insurance companies to assist in documentation of traffic accidents.
01.12.2016, Risto BerendsonPM
Mergers producing new names
Arguments over future names of merged parishes can lead to collapsed negotiations as happened recently in Ida-Viru County after Lüganuse parish refused to change its 13th century name and adopt that of Kiviõli, the history of which spans just 70 years.
30.11.2016, Nils NiitraPM
Taavi Roivas was PM 974 days
As the new government led by Juri Ratas is to be sworn in on Wednesday, Prime Minister Taavi Roivas will have been in office for two years and eight months or 974 days.
Ratas' government takes office
Chairman of the Center Party Jüri Ratas was given powers to form Estonia's next government with 53 votes after three hours of answering MPs' questions in the parliament yesterday.
22.11.2016, Tuuli KochPM
Coalition agreement signed
Chairman of the Center Party Juri Ratas, chairman of the Pro Patria and Res Publica Union (IRL) Margus Tsahkna and chairman of the Social Democratic Party (SDE) Jevgeni Ossinovski signed the coalition agreement in Toompea Castle, the seat of the Estonian parliament, on Monday.
Free Party will not join new govt coalition
The Free Party will not join the new government coalition being set up by the Estonian Center Party, the Social Democratic Party (SDE) and the Pro Patria and Res Publica Union (IRL).
Future government plans wide-ranging tax reform
The new government plans to introduce an €315 million investment program, privatize, either in part or in full, four state-owned companies, lay down a banking tax, abolish income tax incentives on loan interests etc. Grand redistribution of taxes is also in the pipeline that will see minimum income exempt from tax raised from the current 170 euros a month to 500 euros from 2018.
18.11.2016, Tõnis OjaPM
Officials parry talk of East turn
While Estonia discusses tax changes, both government office, as well as foreign and defense ministry officials are busy combating rumors started by some foreign publications of a Kremlin-minded government about to take power in Estonia.
18.11.2016, Evelyn KaldojaPM
Talks entering home stretch
While the desire of the partners of the new government, now tired of night sittings, to keep their soul and face remains a minor annoyance, the Center Party's promise to ensure voting discipline means the triumvirate will have an agreement by tomorrow evening, which it can then present to party councils on Saturday.
17.11.2016, Tuuli KochPM
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
Coalition agreement progress one day at a time
Estonia's possible new triumvirate government hopes to sign the coalition agreement, talks on which kicked off with security topics the day before yesterday, by the end of next week. Yesterday saw the parties move on to tax and economic questions, which are also on the agenda for today. The hopeful coalition will work through Saturday to take a day of rest before the new week on Sunday.
11.11.2016, Karin KangroPM
Ratas: Estonian Center Party's agreement with United Russia is non-active
According to Juri Ratas, chairman of Estonia's Center Party which on Wednesday launched consultations to set up a new government, his party's cooperation agreement with Russia's ruling party United Russia is not active.
Thorny path towards a new government
Three quiet claps that followed the successful vote of no confidence against Prime Minister Taavi Rõivas in the parliament yesterday characterize the difficult path ahead of the next potential coalition.
10.11.2016, Tuuli KochPM
Ratas says no long coalition agreement will be drawn up
According to Juri Ratas, chairman of Estonia's Center Party who launched coalition talks on Wednesday, the new government coalition is not to draw up a long coalition agreement, but will instead agree on general principles and in the future will be ready to head all good ideas.
Center, IRL, SDE: Estonia needs fresh ideas
Estonia's Center Party, Social Democratic Party (SDE) and the Pro Patria and Res Publica Union (IRL) said on Wednesday evening after launching coalition consultations that the new government plans to be open to and consider everybody's good ideas.
Estonian PM ousted in confidence vote
The Estonian parliament on Wednesday expressed no confidence in Prime Minister Taavi Roivas.
Heads of 5 Estonian parlt groups invite PM to resign by 2 p.m. on Wednesday
Chairmen of five Estonian parliamentary groups after a meeting on Tuesday afternoon invited Prime Minister Taavi Roivas, the chairman of the Reform Party, to resign as head of government by Wednesday at 2 p.m. or otherwise all five parties will express no confidence in him.
Estonian PM not to resign
Estonian Prime Minister Taavi Roivas said on Tuesday morning after the Reform Party's board meeting that he will not resign and will fight in defense of his positions.
Income tax on dividends could be lowered
Information available to Postimees suggests that the prime minister's economic growth working group will propose cutting the rate of income tax on regular dividends to 14 percent, instead of the current 20, as part of a package of changes next Wednesday. Regular dividend payments would be defined as the average distributed profit for the past three years. Anything above that would be subject to the current 20 percent rate.
04.11.2016, Joosep VärkPM
Estonian govt decides to peg retirement age to life expectancy from 2027
The Estonian government decided on Thursday to peg the retirement age to life expectancy from 2027 and allow the people themselves to choose the time of retiring.
Traitor Dressen deprived of citizenship
The government decided yesterday to deprive Viktoria Dressen, wife of former Internal Security Service (KAPO) operative, convicted traitor Aleksei Dressen, of citizenship. Prime Minister Taavi Rõivas said during the press conference that the decision constitutes a precedent in re-independent Estonia.
04.11.2016, Liis VelskerPM
Indian govt approves agreement on prisoner transfers with Estonia
The Indian Cabinet has endorsed an agreement between India and Estonia on the transfer of sentenced persons, the Business Standard reported on Thursday.
Veronica Anghel: take corrupt Romanian politicians, keep the corrupt Romanian parties
Romanian politicians tend to go down with a bang. Or, more accurately, with the slam of a prison door, preferably on camera. The ethical standards to which politicians are romantically upheld are in total contrast to the displays of corruption and dishonesty to which we are daily witnesses. Add to this their hope for more likely electoral victories through false promises and indifferent speeches and it’s like asking for a shovel when you are already on the bottom of the pit… The greatest damage being done is not to themselves, but to the faith of citizens in the political party – the backbone of democratic governance. In order to restore it, both voters and politicians need to lower their expectations from this relationship.
12.10.2016, Veronica AnghelPM
Survey: Center Party is still Estonia's most popular party
The Center Party and the Reform Party were Estonia's most popular parties in September, while support for the opposition Conservative People's Party (EKRE) and the Free Party is declining, results of a survey commissioned by the public broadcaster ERR and carried out by pollster Turu-uuringute AS show.
Replacement activity rendering the government indecisive
The government spends hours discussing 700-page overviews of state functionality, remits bills, and finds that things could and should be done faster and better without making any actual decisions – as described by more than one member of the cabinet.
23.09.2016, Tuuli KochPM
Ministry advising Estonia not to participate in Expo 2020
The Estonian Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications has proposed to the government that Estonia would not take part in the Expo 2020 in Dubai as it would cost the country at least six million euros and the money could be used for more useful things, for instance taking part in entrepreneurship fairs.
Estonian govt approves Montenegro joining NATO
The Estonian government on Thursday approved a bill which concerns approving a protocol of the North Atlantic Treaty on Montenegro joining the NATO.
Reform rules to support Nestor in 1st round
The board of the Reform Party decided at a meeting Tuesday morning to accept a proposal of the junior government partner Social Democratic Party (SDE) for the two parties to adopt SDE's Eiki Nestor as their joint candidate in the first voting round of the presidential election in parliament and Reform's Siim Kallas in the second and third round.
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.
Estonia shines on as top diligent EU rule keeper
At least in the conscience of Estonians, the perception of us being among the best examples of sticking to European Union's rules and principles has prevailed for quite a while. As again confirmed by the European Commission's fresh report published today.
01.08.2016, Joosep VärkPM
Minister: Tallinn airport bomb threat maker knew how to make himself hard to find
Estonian Interior Minister Hanno Pevkur said that the person who made a bomb threat against Estonia-Germany flights knew how to make finding him as difficult as possible.
Decision to extradite Ukrainian separatist takes effect
The extradition of Estonian citizen Vladimir Poljakov to Ukraine who is suspected of fighting in the ranks of separatists in eastern Ukraine took effect on Friday as the Estonian Supreme Court did not accept his cassation.
Cracked and Rusted Unity getting a new paint job
2016 hasn’t been kind for one of the leading government parties in Latvia - Unity who. is now becoming a metaphor for shooting oneself in the foot. The party in less than one year has lost support, lost one seat in government, lost prime minister chair and the trust of people who voted for Unity in 2014.
08.06.2016, Raivis VilūnsPM
Editorial: the political component and economic reckoning
Doubtless, state enterprise management and related decisions always come with both economic and political components. If the purely political becomes too much, the resulting imbalance is bad for society, and at times for the decision makers themselves. Seeing that, as a rule, state controls strategic companies directly of indirectly determining functioning and welfare of the state.
National Audit Office: government pumped money into Estonian Air hurriedly and superficially
National Audit Office says the European Commission decision regarding Estonian state having supported national airline AS Estonian Air with €84.9m in violation of EU rules could have been avoided, had the government followed the principles of State Assets Act and asked if giving money and loans to Estonian Air was purposeful, expedient, economical and lawful.
24.05.2016, Liis KängseppPM
Estonian govt reaches agreement on budget strategy
Members of the government have reached a political agreement on Estonia's budget strategy for the next three years, Finance Minister Sven Sester said on Wednesday.
Editorial: fidgeting in comfort zone
This week, this Taavi Rõivas government turns one year old. The Reform, Soc Dems and IRL coalition has cruised like circus bus – one engine, many drivers, the engine tweaked while in gear plus body work applied. The passengers i.e. people don't trust them too much… And yet it moves. And it does go a little further from point A – not necessarily to point B though.
Estonian govt supports compensating EUR 400 of workers' sporting expenses per year
Estonian government is planning to allow companies to compensate for employees' sporting expenses in the amount of 100 euros per quarter or 400 euros a year without paying fringe benefit tax.
Proposals wanted from ministers for moving state institutions out of Tallinn
Minister of Public Administration Arto Aas is waiting for concrete proposals from other ministers and country governments as to what public sector institutions could be moved out of Tallinn and how feasible it would be.
Taking the state apart and putting it back together. To be better
This week, Praxis the think tank blasted state reform as non-satisfactory. The state apparatus is all astir now. As outcome of that, finance ministry came public with their plan for rearrangements of state agencies. Their plan was the fist to be tabled.
04.03.2016, Oliver KundPM
Editorial: careless care
One day it may happen. When it turns out a loved one needs constant care and support due to age or severe illness. Such is increasingly the case thus forcing us to take an ever more serious look at aging with dignity.
Estonian PM against decision-making by vote in govt
Estonian Prime Minister Taavi Roivas said on Thursday he is not in favor of decision-making by vote in the government as this would not be fair toward the smaller coalition partners.
Estonia to take Romeo Kalda case to Grand Chamber of ECHR
The Estonian government decided on Thursday to take the legal dispute between life inmate Romeo Kalda and the government over the use of interner in jail before the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR).
Estonian soldiers may return to Iraq - defense minister
Estonia's ability to contribute to the fight against the Sunni extremist group IS is limited, but one way to do this is to send to Iraq instructors of the defense forces to train local armed forces, Defense Minister Hannes Hanso told.
15.02.2016, News.postimees.ee / BNSPM
Estonian minister: We must start closing embassies
In the light of the government's cost-cutting plans, Estonia must close some of its embassies, Foreign Minister Marina Kaljurand said before the Riigikogu on Thursday.
Workplace of foreign minister exposed to eavesdropping
Two years after the infamous phone call between Urmas Paet and Catherine Ashton on Maidan snipers which was eavesdropped, part of top foreign ministry staff facilities are still available for ears of hostile intelligence.
10.02.2016, Risto BerendsonPM
PM lays wreath at independence monument on 96th anniversary of Tartu Peace Treaty
Estonian Prime Minister Taavi Roivas on Tuesday morning placed a wreath at the War of Independence Victory Monument in Tallinn in commemoration of the 96th anniversary of the Tartu Peace Treaty.
Editorial: power struggle under gay couples cover
Turns out, they may actually split the government, and that formally because of the registered partnership act implementation provisions. In the tussle, good will by soc dems is just nowhere to be seen. And the other two seem to be lacking any trace of trust.
Estonian PM promises to deal with shortcomings of refugee policy
According to Estonian Prime Minister Taavi Roivas the state has already taken into account the recommendations of the National Audit Office regarding the refugee policy and government agencies have to continue working toward eliminating all shortcomings.
Natl Audit Office: Estonia is poorly prepared for receiving refugees
Estonia's ability to welcome people applying for international protection as well as the ones who have received the status of displaced person and to integrate them into the society is insufficient and needs significant improvement, the National Audit Office finds.
Estonia not to appeal negative decision re Estonian Air state aid
The Estonian government decided on Monday not to appeal against the European Commission's decision regarding state aid provided to the national carrier Estonian Air.
Editorial: Ilves gets hands dirty
During his time in office, President Toomas Hendrik Ilves has not been overly eager to invade into domestic policy. Primarily, he's been at his functions in English and in issues more global. Doubtless, he's excelled at that. Meanwhile, there's situations where a feistier touch at home might have come in handy. Instead of viewing it as backwaters as some have critically ventured to claim.
Estonia to continue on same course - PM
Estonia needs to achieve permanent allied presence in the area to ensure its security and carry on previous economic policy to increase prosperity, Prime Minister Taavi Roivas says in a programmatic article in Tuesday's issue of Postimees.
12.01.2016, News.postimees.ee / BNSPM
The golden parachutes gang
Not too long ago, in the 1990ies, former chiefs in law enforcement faced the danger of dropping out of state system. By now, Estonia features a coterie ensured place on public payroll after the term expires.
30.12.2015, Oliver KundPM
IRL's Tsahkna: Fatherland forever
The fresh head of IRL, Margus Tsahkna thinks this past year featured an overdose of political games. He was especially annoyed by the testing of options for creation of new government under cover of opening the coalition treaty in summer.
30.12.2015, Tuuli KochPM
Euroscepticism up a bit
As evidenced in poll ordered by Government Office, for the first time since 2011 the satisfaction of Estonians with belonging to the European Union has shrunk.
29.12.2015, Helen MihelsonPM
Govt decides to extradite citizen who fought on side of separatists in Ukraine
The Estonian government decided at Wednesday's Cabinet meeting to extradite to Ukraine an Estonian man declared suspect in terrorism in connection with allegations that he has fought in the ranks of separatists in eastern Ukraine, spokespeople for the government said.
Editorial: the three-prime-minister nation
«Whenever companions don’t agree, they work without accord; and naught but trouble doth result, although they all work hard.» Observe the Estonian governmental version of Crawfish, the Pike, and the Swan by Ivan Krylov.
Editorial: the wrong end to start a reform
State reform planned by government includes lay-off of 3,500 of public cadre by 2019. The main blow hits social ministry. While the promise is not to thin ranks of such as offer social and health care services, support staff in regional hospitals is faced with cuts. Among others things, the state wants Tartu University Hospital to send 85 people packing and outsource part of the work.
Hestitation coalition created by Rõivas embraces seasonal Christmas peace
Born in deep inner distrust as situation in parliament allegedly offered no better variants, the coalition led by Taavi Rõivas has arrived at a point where they just don't feel like altering the government before Christmas. But the spring may bring salvation.
10.12.2015, Tuuli KochT24
Briti luurejuhtide jõulukaart pakub James Bondi stiilis peamurdmist
Briti luurejuhtide selle aasta jõulukaardil ei ole jõuluvana ega päkapikke, vaid James Bondi stiilis krüptograafiaülesanne.
10.12.2015, Inna-Katrin HeinPM
Hospital rebells at lay-off demand by the state
Last night, council of Tartu University Hospital members sent a standpoint to social ministry stating that the prescribed lay-off of 85 posts is neither purposeful, expedient nor feasible.
08.12.2015, Aime JõgiPM
Parts hopes govt will stay together in spite of his candidacy
Former Estonian Prime Minister Juhan Parts, nominated by the minister of finance for the Estonian seat in the European Court of Auditors (ECA), expressed hope on Friday that his nomination will not lead to a collapse of the government despite opposition to him by Social Democrats.
SDE secretary general says 'red line' has been reached
The appointment of former prime minister Juhan Parts as candidate for the Estonian representative in the European Court of Auditors (ECA) despite public opposition by the Social Democratic Party (SDE) is taking relations between partners in the ruling coalition to a critical point, the secretary general of SDE, Inara Luigas, said.
Finmin to nominate Juhan Parts candidate for ECA
Finance Minister Sven Sester is about to make a proposal to the government to nominate Juhan Parts as candidate for the Estonian representative in the European Court of Auditors (ECA) despite opposition to the candidacy of Parts expressed by the coalition partner Social Democratic Party (SDE).
Editorial: trust shaking, govt standing
In the common clay pot of the threefold coalition, new cracks are these days being discovered while pointing at one another saying was this you? Even so, the pot is intact being one of the kind in the household. And the cooking will go on, near-term. This might be a picture to paint about this next crisis of trust.
Rõivas returns from China to resolve conflict
IRL vs Soc Dems clash plays trumps into Reform hands regarding desirable EU post.
27.11.2015, Joosep VärkPM
Nordic combines several existing aviation companies
Players involved say the mosaic of aviation companies named Nordic and owned by Estonian entrepreneurs and of Nordic Aviation Group established by the state with €40m is but an optical illusion.
25.11.2015, Andres ReimerPM
Estonian parlt panel unanimously supports extending defense chief's term in office
The National Defense Committee of the Estonian parliament on Monday unanimously supported a proposal to extend by two years defense forces commander Lt. Gen. Riho Terras' term of office.
Intervjuu: Korea loodab näidata maailmale 5G võimalusi juba kahe aasta pärast
Maailma e-liider Korea loodab juba kahe aasta pärast anda esimesena maailmas inimeste käsutusse 5G-tehnoloogia esimesi vilju ning digiajastu kiire areng võib saada võtmeks ka kahe Korea ühinemisele juba meie eluea jooksul, leidis Lõuna-Korea siseminister Jong Sup Chong Tallinnas antud lühiintervjuus Postimehe tehnikaportaalile.
23.11.2015, Aivar PauPM
Jonatan Vseviov nominated for secretary general of Defense Ministry
Estonian Defense Minister Hannes Hanso has proposed to the government to appoint current deputy secretary general for defense planning Jonatan Vseviov secretary general of the Defense Ministry.
Minister: Redundancy payouts to Estonian Air employees depend on creditors
Due to the requirement that all parties be treated equally, employees of Estonian Air will get redundancy payouts if all creditors agree to this, Minister of Economic Affairs and Communications Kristen Michal said.
Estonian govt approves package of foreign mission bills for 2016
The Estonian government on Thursday approved proposals of the defense minister for using members of the defense forces to fulfil Estonia's international obligations on different missions.
Estonian govt appoints Mikk Marran head of Information Board
The Estonian government on Thursday released Rainer Saks from the position of director general of the Information Board and appointed Mikk Marran as new director general of the country's main intelligence agency.
Govt releases traitor Dressen from Estonian citizenship
The government here on Thursday released Aleksei Dressen, the counter-intelligence officer sentenced to jail in Estonia for spying for Russia and then exchanged for the Estonian security officer Eston Kohver serving a jail sentence in Russia, of his Estonian citizenship.
Rally against Estonian govt's asylum policy draws a couple of hundred participants
An estimated couple of hundred people took part in a rally against the government's policy concerning the acceptance of asylum seekers in the Estonian capital Tallinn on Wednesday, organizers told BNS.
DefMin's secretary general to be nominated for head of Information Board
Defense Minister Hannes Hanso is going to nominate Mikk Marran for director general of the Information Board, Estonia's main intelligence agency.
IRL leader wants govt's ratification decision to refer to Tartu Peace Treaty
The chairman of Pro Patria and Res Publica Union (IRL), Margus Tsakhna, says the Estonian government must add a reference to the 1920 Tartu Peace Treaty to its decision concerning the ratification of the border treaty between Estonia and Russia.
PM: No political declarations will be added to Estonian-Russian border treaty
No political declarations will be added to the border treaty between Estonia and Russia, Estonian Prime Minister Taavi Roivas said on Thursday.
Estonian govt decides to pass on border treaty for ratification
The Estonian government decided on Thursday to forward the Estonian-Russian border treaty and the treaty on the delimitation of maritime areas of the two countries in the Gulf of Finland and Narva Bay to the parliament for ratification.
Editorial: new ship, same trip
As, under new head Jevgeni Ossinovski, the Soc Dems opted to stay on in government and did the portfolio swap, Hannes Hanso replacing the former party chief and experienced defence minister Sven Mikser was the surprise most surprising. If it works, don't fix it? Not in this case. Why oh why?
Estonia to set up new national airline
The Estonian government is about to set up a new company that would take over the role of national flag carrier if the European Commission makes a negative ruling as regards the lawfulness of state aid for Estonian Air.
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
Estonian president appoints Ossinovski, Hanso, Oviir ministers
President Toomas Hendrik Ilves on Monday appointed Social Democrats Jevgeni Ossinovski, Hannes Hanso and Liisa Oviir to the positions of minister of health and labor, defense, and entrepreneurship, respectively.
Refugees, reforms, pigs, milk ...
Launching the fresh political season today, Riigikogu stands faced with problems at home and abroad. Not limited to the European refugee issues, heads of the factions think it important to progress with administrative/state reform, helping the farmers, and work capacity reform.
14.09.2015, Tuuli KochPM
Back in the picture and hungry for intrigue
Practicing the prosthesis ten steps at a time, Edgar Savisaar has again managed to stir political elation and glee in comrades by declaring willingness to keep on fighting as Centre chairman. And: the will to tease other parties is still in him.
11.09.2015, Tuuli KochPM
Prime Minister: Dividing refugees proportionally in EU is important step
According to Estonian Prime Minister Taavi Roivas the deal according to which refugees will be divided between European Union member states proportionally is an important step forward.
Central government to decline by 750 employees
The Estonian government on Tuesday discussed a plan according to which the number of people working in the central government is to decline by about 750 people in 2015 and 2016 which would mean the state would save 13 million euros a year.
Ossinovski and his several sorry options
In the Hesitation Coalition handed at least some extra time to rule, the Soc Dems chief Jevgeni Ossinovski has an opportunity to show himself a team player and aim for truce in government and own party.
08.09.2015, Tuuli KochPM
Soc Dems to seat Ossinovski, Hanso and Liisa Oviir in government
On Saturday, board of Social Democrats nominated Liisa Oviiri, Hannes Hanso and party chairman Jevgeni Ossinovski as candidates for business, defence and health/labour ministers respectively.
Palo ponders leaving politics
Having announced resignation from entrepreneurship minister's post this Sunday, Urve Palo (Soc Dems) says she is considering leaving politics altogether and will decide within days.
01.09.2015, Toomas RandloPM
Editorial: travelling on, in discomfort and political reality
This one thing she got wrong. Having stepped down in anger, business minister Urve Palo slammed this govt a «coalition of convenience». Nothing comfy here, even for Reform.
Business minister resigns
Yesterday, Soc Dems management decided that they continue in coalition and intend to maneuver chairman Jevgeni Ossinovski into government. Also importantly, minister or entrepreneurship Urve Palo said she would step down.
31.08.2015, Anneli AmmasPM
Fate of coalition to be settled on Sunday
For several weeks now, the governing coalition has been discussing social democrats' proposals to amend the power treaty. The talks are nearing their end and the Soc Dems management, convening on Sunday, will determine whether what has been achieved is acceptable and sufficient to continue in the coalition.
28.08.2015, Indrek MäePM
Estonian president: State already too thin in internal security
The state has been allowed to become already too thin when it comes to internal security, Estonian President Toomas Hendrik Ilves said on Wednesday.
U.S. Congressional delegation led by John McCain to visit Estonia
A delegation of U.S. senators lead by Sen. John McCain, chairman of the Senate Committee on Armed Services, will visit Estonia from Aug. 20 to 21 to meet with Estonian government leaders.
Estonian parlt to convene extraordinary sitting on Tuesday to discuss Greek aid package
Estonian government on Thursday sent to the parliament the bill of the Greek aid package and asked the Riigikogu to convene an extraordinary sitting on Aug. 18.
Estonian govt to cover hospital bill of citizen taken ill in Turkey
The Estonian government on Thursday decided to allocate 48,593 euros to cover the extraordinary hospital bill of an Estonian who was taken ill in Turkey and the Social Ministry is also in negotiations with the Vaatsa rural municipality for partial compensation of medical costs.
Rainer Saks to become secretary general of ForMin
Estonian Foreign Minister Marina Kaljurand is to propose to the government naming director general of the Information Board Rainer Saks new secretary general of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs as of Dec. 1.
Soc Dems demand add-ons to coalition treaty
Having convened yesterday, Soc Dem board opted to continue talks with partners-i-government in order to enter additional clauses deemed important during August.
10.08.2015, Helen MihelsonPM
Turkish hospital bill awaiting government verdict
For a family of four, and end-of-April trip to Turkey ended with father's illness and a mega hospital bill, the compensation of which hangs on decision by Estonian government.
03.08.2015, Siiri LiivaPM
Ligi blasts SDE's wish to revisit coalition agreement
Jurgen Ligi, Estonia's minister of education and research from the ruling Reform Party, criticized sharply coalition partner Social Democratic Party's (SDE) wish to reopen the coalition accord at Thursday's press conference of the government.
Estonia to accept 150 refugees from Mediterranean area in Phase 1
European Union interior ministers in their emergency meeting in Brussels on Monday endorsed a decision of the European Council aimed at helping 60,000 refugees and concluded an interim agreement under which Estonia will accept 150 refugees of the Mediterranean crisis in the first stage.
Editorial: tax bill to spice up vacation
Tax inspection talk is sensitive, any time. By recent no-confidence vote, the new government has added a dimension or two. Add to this the midsummer tax board announcement of boosted intrusion bill.
Rein Lang eyeing advocate's job
Rein Lang, who has served as Estonia's minister of justice, culture and foreign affairs, is about to do an advocate's examination to be able to join the Bar Association and work as a sworn advocate.
20.07.2015, News.postimees.ee / BNSPM
Govt okays EUR 91,000 reward for people who found Viking-era wealth deposits
The Estonian government has approved the allocation of 91,300 euros to the National Heritage Board to pay rewards to the people who found two late Viking-era wealth deposits and a burial mound in the area of the village of Koue to the southeast of Tallinn in 2013 and 2014.
Reform Party board gives nod to Kaljurand as Estonia's new foreign minister
The board of the ruling Reform Party on Friday backed chairman and Prime Minister Taavi Roivas' proposal to nominate career diplomat Marina Kaljurand for Estonia's next foreign minister.
Estonia sought as e-midwife to aspiring African Tiger
At the end of June, Prime Minister Taavi Rõivas and IT-entrepreneurs hosted head of São Tomé and Príncipe’s government Patrice Émery Trovoada who desires to use Estonians’ experience in making his tiny state an African success story.
10.07.2015, Andres ReimerPM
Estonia planning to pay support to old age pensioners living alone
Estonian Ministry of Social Affairs is planning to start paying old age pensioners who live alone additional support of 115 euros per year.
Center Party asks president not to sign tax changes into law
Chair of the parliamentary group and acting head of Estonia's opposition Center Party Kadri Simson on Tuesday asked President Toomas Hendrik Ilves to not promulgate the tax law amendments passed by the Riigikogu on Monday.
Estonian prime minister stands up to no-confidence vote
Estonian Prime Minister Taavi Roivas survived a vote of no confidence in parliament on Monday, sidestepping the second serious challenge to him and his two-month-old coalition government related to the package of tax changes that the coalition wants to push through to secure sources of financing for its government program.
Estonian parlt passes tax law amendments
The Riigikogu on Monday passed amendments to the Social Tax Act, Income Tax Act and other laws according to which the excise duties on alcohol, tobacco and fuel will be raised faster than planned by the previous governments and the value added tax on accommodation services raised from 9 percent to 14 percent.
Estonian Center Party decides to move against prime minister
The Center Party will start collecting parliament members' signatures in support of a motion of no confidence against Prime Minister Taavi Roivas, vice chair of the opposition party and head of its parliamentary group Kadri Simson said after an emergency meeting of the party board on Wednesday.
Estonia will on no account agree to obligatory refugee quotas - govt
The government on Tuesday took the position that Estonia does not approve obligatory quotas for taking in refugees but Prime Minister Taavi Roivas declined to name a concrete figure that could suit Estonia.
Number of central government employees grows by 1,000 in 2014
While the number of public sector workers in Estonia dropped from 138,000 to 137,000 in Estonia last year, the number of workers of the central government grew from 55,000 to 56,000.
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.
The power trio and its triple crisis
Yesterday, they approved tax package and budget strategy in the government. Based on that, coalition talks might be called conclusive – at long last. Even so, the political peace is not everlastingly here, as two more gauntlets remain to be run in May and June. And all three have a unique internal crisis to manage.
22.05.2015, Argo IdeonPM
Uber confirms expansion into Estonia
Yesterday, the US car-sharing start-up Uber confirmed plans to expand into Estonia. According to Central and Eastern European regional head Jambu Palaniappan, they have come here to be considered a serious global player.
06.05.2015, Kadri HansaluPM
Enterprise Estonia again faced with reshuffle
Caught in the whirlwind of promises uttered by fresh governmental coalition, the foundation Enterprise Estonia (EAS) is rearranging both structure of organisation and administration. Starting June 1st, 16 posts will be cut – five percent of staff thus thinned out. On top of that, many a minister has set his sight on the very EAS to cover costs or fulfil personal ambitions. As we remember, it was as recently as last November that EAS confirmed the principles of granting benefits.
29.04.2015, Kadri HansaluPM
Fuel excise rise protested in Toompea
At mid-day, yesterday, a demonstration against fuel excise rise was held in Toompea, registered and organised by EKRE youth organisation Sinine Äratus (Blue Awakening).
27.04.2015, Meribel SinikaldaPM
Lessons of austerity at education ministry: Ligi sees how to save some money
Education and research minister Jürgen Ligi (55) underlines he will function as trade union for teachers and will stand for a rise in their pay. Even so, he admits state budget lacks money for utilities of private schools, and parallel to free higher education it is again being pondered how universities might ask students for extra euros.
21.04.2015, Anneli AmmasPM
Kairi Uustulnd assumes job of chief of Estonian prime minister's office
Kairi Uustulnd started performing the duties of head of the office of the prime minister of Estonia on Monday, taking over from Liina Kersna who won a seat in parliament in the March 1 general election.
100-day plan calls for boosting host nation support, border guard capabilities
Of measures concerning security, the First 100 Days Plan of the new Estonian government focuses on hosting allied forces and strengthening of the border guard.
Strong dollar joins excise rise to make fuel dearer
While excise rise in pipeline threatens to add 23.5 cents to litre of retail fuel in five years, considerable extra price rise looms by potential rise in oil prices and strengthening of the dollar.
15.04.2015, Tõnis OjaPM
Estonia won't achieve budget surplus before 2018
Revenues of the Estonian state budget will not surpass expenditures until 2018 and the nominal budgetary position is estimated to have a deficit of 0.5 percent of GDP this year, 0.6 percent next year and 0.5 percent in 2017.
Estonia's new government takes oath of office
Ministers of Estonia's new government of the Reform Party, the Social Democratic Party (SDE) and the Pro Patria and Res Publica Union (IRL) on Thursday took their oaths of office before the parliament.
Mikser, Reinsalu to become Estonian PM's substitutes
Estonian Defense Minister Sven Mikser from the Social Democratic Party (SDE) is to be appointed as the substitute of Prime Minister Taavi Roivas during his absences and Justice Minister Urmas Reinsalu from the Pro Patria and Res Publica Union (IRL) as his second substitute.
Editorial: new govt set to accelerate thru grey stone
The new government is in office and ready to roll. Not much time to accelerate, admonished the President. Counting from Election Day, the 38 pages of the agreement took 38 days to complete – Estonia’s record length of the ages. In the words of prime minister Taavi Rõivas, it emerged through the grey stone.
Yesterday, coalition agreement was signed in the white hall of Riigikogu by representatives of Reform, Soc Dems and IRL. Two hours after the event, prime minister candidate Taavi Rõivas (Reform) launched into his speech before parliament about bases for forming the government. Having heard that, with 58 yes-votes the Riigikogu awarded him powers to get with it.
09.04.2015, News.postimees.ee / BNSPM
Estonian parlt gives Roivas powers to form govt
The Riigikogu voted on Wednesday to give Taavi Roivas, chairman of the Reform Party, powers to form the next Estonian government.
Roivas: It's logical that Cohabitation Act will take effect in Estonia
Answering a question from a Center Party MP in parliament on Wednesday, prime minister designate Taavi Roivas said the enactment of the Cohabitation Act is a logical course of events.
Three Estonian parties sign coalition deal
The Reform Party, the Social Democratic Party (SDE) and Pro Patria and Res Publica Union (IRL) on Wednesday signed an agreement to form a coalition government to govern Estonia during the four years until next elections.
Hesitation coalition signs truce
At noon today, the long-awaited governmental document gets its signatures by Reform, Soc Dems and IRL. Whether for four years or four months – at least the month-long toil is over. For a moment.
08.04.2015, Tuuli KochPM
Estonia's govt coalition to lower social tax to 32 pct
According to Estonia's new coalition agreement the social tax would be lowered by 1 percentage point as of 2017 which would reduce tax receipts by 80-90 million euros per year.
Editorial: a new government, a new predicament
Until all is sure, nothing is sure. This is apt to describe where we are at, with the government. The basics have been agreed, but that may not mean a final solution. With the 38 pages of power agreement approved, executors thereof – meaning: the ministers – are far from certain.
Whipping up willingness
Burning the midnight oil yesterday, Reform Party council proceeded to bless the 38 pages of power agreement for the fresh union of three (aka «hesitation coalition», «spare govt», «the hapless three»). Arguing, and hard pressed. Today, like heavy lifting awaits councils of IRL and Soc Dems.
07.04.2015, Tuuli KochPM
Jurgen Ligi tipped for education minister
Member of the Reform Party's governing board Jurgen Ligi, former minister of defense and finance, will in great probability get the portfolio of education and research in the new Estonian government.
06.04.2015, News.postimees.ee / BNSPM
IRL to give ministerial portfolios to Reinsalu, Sester, Pomerants, Tsahkna
The ministerial portfolios given to Pro Patria and Res Publica Union (IRL) under the three-party coalition deal will go to Urmas Reinsalu, Sven Sester, Marko Pomerants and Margus Tsahkna, the party's governing board decided on Monday.
Reform to get 7 govt seats, SDE and IRL 4 each
The Reform Party will be responsible for seven areas in the new Estonian government and its coalition partners Social Democratic Party (SDE) and Pro Patria and Res Publica Union (IRL) for four areas each, the leaders of the three parties decided Monday.
Will the three wise men finally deliver?
After month-long gruelling efforts, Reform chief Taavi Rõivas said yesterday that they are on finishing line. Was this an April Fools’ Day thing? Rather not, one would guess.
02.04.2015, Tuuli KochPM
Editorial: the new Riigikogu – longing for a coalition
Today, work began for the new and 13th membership of the Riigikogu as elected by Estonian citizens four weeks ago. As Board of the Riigikogu gets elected, we get hints if coalition talks are nearing the finishing line or are we in for more days filled with negotiations.
Power talks to drag on for days
Today, representatives of Reform, Soc Dems (SDE) and IRL have another go at getting closer to agreement in three main issues for potential coalition and locate the financial sources to cover costs thereof.
27.03.2015, Karin KangroPM
Ilves: it's not possible to go on with present administrative arrangement
It is not possible for Estonia to go on with the present administrative division, President Toomas Hendrik Ilves said in his speech on the day of towns and rural municipalities on Wednesday, calling on the new Riigikogu to adopt the decisions necessary for administrative reform.
Estonian coalition hopefuls opt for thematic workgroups
The Reform Party, the Social Democratic Party (SDE) and Pro Patria and Res Publica Union (IRL), which are holding talks to form a coalition government, decided on Monday to set up thematic workgroups to increase the effectiveness of their consultations.
World top elusive for Estonian e-brain
From the beginning of this year, Estonia is supposed to possess an e-brain i.e. a spot where all state agency data are machine-readable, in one place, and accessible to all. Not happening.
23.03.2015, Marian MänniPM
Unemployment fund head: employers should boost attractiveness
For several years running, disarray is order of the day at Estonian labour market – on the one hand, entrepreneurs converged in Tallinn and Harju County lack labourers; on the other, in several rural regions joblessness remains an issue.
19.03.2015, Kadri HansaluPM
Editorial: the four go tug-of-war
As of today, coalition talks «are stuck» (said Sven Mikser) and the struggling agreement in danger of becoming «a round ball» (said Andres Herkel).
Power talks break down
With no real results to show, coalition talks have grinded to a halt. With Reform Party left rather alone, the deepening human mistrust between parties is foreboding.
19.03.2015, Tuuli KochPM
Free Party, Social Democrats want coalition talks stopped in present form
The Free Party has proposed that the four Estonian parties holding talks to form a government coalition break off the talks in their current form and the Social Democratic Party (SDE) supports the proposal.
One glaringly not needed
On this tenth day of power babble, chief talker Taavi Rõivas (Reform) said the weighty decisions start today – on the afternoon of which he leaves for Brussels for a couple of days.
18.03.2015, Tuuli KochPM
Toiling towards coalition, by SMS and demanding theses
Calling three parties to coalition talks, Reform is in obvious urge for swift solution as each passing day pumps smaller partners with fresh faith, stronger stakes and other options.
05.03.2015, Tuuli KochPM
Editorial: the six slices of cake
As humbly admitted by soc dem chief Sven Mikser, on elections day voter is king. And, should the king wish two new parties in parliament, the seats cannot obviously be added to the existing 101. Some will have to make way.
Editorial: the people have spoken …
This very day, the parties freshly in parliament will be searching for common ground and combining towards next coalition. The people have spoken, but the content of what was said will be intensely debated by politicians.
Agriculture minister throws money to educational institution
Soc dem agriculture minister Ivari Padar this Wednesday signed directive granting Võrumaa Local Governments Union €75,000 – exceptionally. Mr Padar runs for parliament in selfsame district.
27.02.2015, Nils NiitraPM
Grim Reaper kept busy by ignorance and negligence
As compared to rest of Europe, Estonia loses way too many lives due to injuries. Having studied the causes, Government Office strategy bureau adviser Maris Leimann says the state should deal with changing people’s attitudes – thus, many deaths would not be.
26.02.2015, Hanneli RudiPM
Feels like farmers have perhaps survived
Pan-Estonian survey shows farmers grew desperate during the winter but now, with spring in the air, milk seems to sell again.
26.02.2015, Andres ReimerE24
USA ja Briti luure suudavad pealt kuulata suurt osa maailma mobiiliühendustest
Vilepuhuja Edward Snowdeni lekitatud materjalide kohaselt murdsid USA luureorganisatsiooni NSA spetsialistid ja nende briti kolleegid sisse maailma suurima SIM-kaartide tootja Gemalto sisevõrku ning varastasid krüptovõtmed, mida kasutatakse ülemaailmselt telefoniühenduste turvamiseks, kirjutab The Intercept.
Editorial: strategic cooperation or tactical spending spree?
While a relatively successful user of EU support, Estonia does have stuff to think over regarding the new budget period. In our near-term investments, EU euros play a vital role. Therefore, should we use these unwisely or splash out stupidly, instead of hoped-for economic development all we’ll have is nothingness and an expensive (and at times pointless) infrastructure.
US extends Finland invitation to joint air exercise in Estonia
The United States has extended an official written invitation to Finland to participate in joint air force exercises in Estonia, the U.S. Embassy in Finland confirmed to Finland's STT news agency late on Wednesday evening.
Booze producers are blasting the government
Yesterday, strong alcohol beverages producer Liviko announced of having laid off 18 posts and a switch to part-time work citing ultra sharp excise rise by the state.
14.01.2015, Marge TubalkainPM
Editorial: fresh spring winds or windows firmly shut
With month and a half to go till general elections, hopes are somewhat up. Dissatisfaction with state of affairs has sent a signal: changes expected. In two ways, at least.
Paet eyes return from MEP to minister
Member of the European Parliament Urmas Paet (Reform Party) says he does not crown list of candidates as mere magnet for votes. Rather, the man harbours hopes to make it back into next government as minister.
14.01.2015, Oliver KundPM
Simple step by government would halt lay-off of hundreds
Despite the breathtakingly plunging price of oil, VKG (Viru Keemia Grupp) would this very Monday call all its laid off staff back to their posts – if government only allowed the company to mine its entire needed oil shale.
09.01.2015, Andres ReimerPM
Estonian govt okays termination of Levira selloff
The Estonian government on Thursday endorsed a proposal of the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications to cut short the process of selloff of the 51 percent of shares held by the government in the cloud, media and network service provider AS Levira.
Estonian president, PM offer condolences over terrorist attack in Paris
Estonian President Toomas Hendrik Ilves and Prime Minister Taavi Roivas have extended condolences to France over the massacre in the headquarters of satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo on Wednesday.
Estonia to pull out of Baltic mine countermeasures squadron
The government on Thursday gave the nod to Estonia's withdrawal from the Baltic mine countermeasures unit BALTRON.
Minister: Focusing on media security not necessary at present
It has not been necessary in Estonia to put a special focus on questions of media security, Interior Minister Hanno Pevkur said on Thursday.
«Estonia 2020» vision begs extra guts
Five years ago, Estonia set itself a goal-of-decade to improve competitiveness. Half way, the aims have largely been reached while the weightiest – raising labour productivity to 80 of EU average – may remain a dream without radical steps taken.
07.01.2015, Oliver KundPM
Estonian PM: Russia must follow provisions of Minsk Protocol
According to Estonian Prime Minister Taavi Roivas it is important that Russia follows provisions of the Minsk Protocol, including the promise to take its forces and weaponry out of Ukraine.
225 applications for e-residency filed
Altogether 225 people from 33 countries have filed an application so far to become an e-resident of Estonia.
Estonia to build new headquarters for EU's IT agency for EUR 8.4 mln
The government on Thursday approved an agreement under which Estonia will build new headquarters for the European Union's IT agency in Tallinn at a cost of 8.4 million euros.
Rõivas: background to decisions needs more explanation
Prime Minister Taavi Rõivas thinks the sharp criticism by Reform Party honorary chairman Siim Kallas towards the current party is not justified. Focussing on success at elections, Mr Rõivas promises generous support to large families.
05.12.2014, Tuuli KochPM
A controlled Estonian leap into the future
In government’s hopes, the e-residency soon offered to foreigners will act as new economic engine. Meanwhile, to control the system, it will tightly clasp all reins.
24.11.2014, Oliver KundPM
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.
Vopak LNG terminal alters Balticconnector course
Come Monday, world leading fuel storing company Vopak launches environmental impact assessment in Jõelähtme Commune primed to grant Muuga Harbour a LNG terminal in just a couple of years.
20.11.2014, Andres ReimerPM
Part of public info routinely hidden as «official»
In practice, Estonia often imposes for-official-use-only limits on information that ought to be freely accessible by public pursuant to law.
17.11.2014, Oliver KundPM
Fast loan firms milk debtor till last drop
Many are the means developed by fast loan providers to make extra money on those late with payments – for instance, creating a debt collecting company of their own. A bill now in pipeline is trying to set a ceiling to debt proceeding costs.
14.11.2014, Marge TubalkainPM
Editorial: Reform Party – the Swedbank of Estonian politics
Today, Reform Party has a party: it turns twenty. Glancing in the rear view mirror, chief squirrels may get some satisfaction – the project launched by a midnight talk between Heiki Kranich and Siim Kallas in the Vienna hotel De France has evolved into a corner stone, a market leader and a power hub of Estonian politics. Easily, its position strikes a comparison to that of Swedbank in banking – 43 percent of all deposits at half year mark. Reform holds a third of the parliament and half the government, matching the impact.
Name change helps paedophiles keep going
Every year up to ten criminals change their names, the law no longer a limit.
13.11.2014, Nils NiitraPM
Govt rules to grant citizenship to 252 people
The Estonian government decided on Thursday to grant citizenship to 251 people and restore the citizenship of one person.
Estonian govt approves national defense bill
The Estonian government on Thursday approved the draft national defense law that combines three separate laws regulating defense of the country at present.
Party whip wins – portfolios passed to insiders
Oh the uproar and upset in Reform Party ranks if again «immigrants» had come before «cadre»! This, the presently popular prime minister Taavi Rõvas was not about to risk.
06.11.2014, Tuuli KochPM
Government appoints Lavly Perling chief prosecutor
Estonian government on Thursday appointed Lavly Perling as prosecutor general.
Government adopts 7 foreign mission bills for next year
Estonian government on Thursday adopted bills according to which next year up to 154 members of the Estonian defense forces would take part in international military operations in the NATO Response Force (NRF) as well as in Afghanistan, Mali, Kosovo, the Middle East and the Nordic Battle Group of the European Union.
PM to forward finmin's resignation to president next Monday
Estonian Prime Minister Taavi Roivas is to forward the resignation of Finance Minister Jurgen Ligi to President Toomas Hendrik Ilves at the beginning of next week.
Editorial: victory for Ukraine
The Sunday elections in Ukraine were a success. While final results are still pending – in a large country and a complicated situation, the votes take days to count – it’s obvious by now the elections by and large were free, democratic and outright excellent as an example of pluralism.
Reform Party names Maris Lauri candidate for finance minister
The Reform Party, senior half of Estonia's ruling coalition, has decided to nominate Maris Lauri for the post of minister of finance.
Jürgen Ligi: offence as political commodity
Freshly resigned finance minister Jürgen Ligi (Reform Party) admits he opted for a careless way to address carefulness, for which he also apologised. Regrettably, the reaction is more revealing regarding attitudes in the education minister – instead of objective and historic facts, playing on national offence and rejection as also on omissions of former governments.
27.10.2014, Jürgen LigiPM
Editorial: the manifold lessons of an insult scandal
By finance minister Jürgen Ligi stepping down due to a social media message, a new layer was added to Estonian political culture. The effect of the layer on long term values, time will tell. The decision shows statesmanship and was justified, while also driven by domestic-political situation as weighing on Mr Ligi personally, Prime Minister Taavi Rõivas and Reform Party.
Editorial: cabinet cadre’s irksome irresponsibility
Entering into office, a member of Estonian government vows to bear responsibility before the state and own conscience. Meaning, an executive politician carries a greater weight. A politician may shame his party and himself; a minister will smear the government and the state. However strong-worded, a minister can’t just afford to blurt it out – in whatever media.
EconMin finishes analysis of Rail Baltic route alternatives
Estonian Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications has finished the analysis of Rail Baltic route alternatives and based on the results county governors can make their decisions concerning the favored route in Estonia.
Estonian health sector workers accept conciliator's pay proposal
The Estonian Medical Association, the Estonian Nurses Association and the Union of Estonian Healthcare Professionals have deemed acceptable a compromise proposal by public conciliator Henn Parn as regards the pay components of health care workers for 2015.
Econmin says followed Finance Ministry's guidelines in ferry tender
The Estonian Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications embarked on a negotiated tendering procedure without prior publication of a tender notice in the tender for the island ferry service contract for the next ten-year period on the recommendation of the Finance Ministry.
Elron CEO says new trains or wagons would eliminate problem of crowding
The main solution to overcrowding on passenger trains during peak hours would be increasing the fleet of trains, and whether the solution lies in the acquisition of new trains or wagons must be shown by an analysis to be conducted by Elron and the government as the party that places the order for public transport service, the CEO of Elron says.
Editorial: deep dealings in shallow waters
In the ideal Estonia, simple stuff might as well be solved. The ideal Estonia could be characterised by absence of Saaremaa and Hiiumaa ferry connection debates all but drowning us every once in a while.
Palo beckons failed ferry firms to her table
Economy and communications ministry is set to continue main islands ferry connection talks with up-to-now failed Vjatšeslav Leedo owned Väinamere Liinid and state enterprise Port of Tallinn.
25.09.2014, Andres ReimerPM
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
Pevkur pledges proper cameras to watch borders
Interior minister Hanno Pevkur, you met the people working on the border – what about their morale and will to work after the capture of Eston Kohver, and the criticism that followed regarding how the border holds?
24.09.2014, Tuuli KochPM
Rõivas: well let’s get started right away!
Having hiked the Estonia-Russia boundary line, yesterday, with interior minister Hanno Pevkur, Police and Border Guard Board chief Elmar Vaher and other police and border guard officials, Prime Minister Taavi Rõivas announced the erecting and completion of border starts this very instant.
24.09.2014, Nils NiitraPM
Editorial: time for kindness!
Strolling down a department store in Estonia, many are the tempting fragrances the nostrils notice – an abundance of sensations for the prodigal buyer and the stingy abstainer alike.
President Ilves at the United Nations World Conference on Indigenous Peoples
Ladies and Gentlemen, It is an honour to address this high-level meeting dedicated to the rights of indigenous peoples.
Nestor: Estonians never lost their spirit of resistance
On Monday morning, the President of the Riigikogu Eiki Nestor met the students of Tallinn School No 21 who had hoisted the Estonian flag on top of Tall Hermann tower on Resistance Struggle Day. He reminded the young people that the Estonian nation never lost their spirit of resistance while living under foreign rule.
The cordon that Russians never left
A 20 years long Estonian-Russian tussle regarding embassy buildings this year wound up with a 99 years contract pursuant to which Estonia may rent land under its Moscow embassy for a token price while Russia, among other things, is able to use the one-time Soviet border guard cordon in Pirita, Tallinn.
22.09.2014, Oliver KundPM
Rõivas: we expect Russia to fully cooperate
Commenting of the kidnapping, this morning, of an Estonian security police officer, Prime Minister Taavi Rõivas said he expects Russia to fully cooperate and provide legal assistance to solve the incident.
05.09.2014, Karin KangroPM
The United States and Estonia - NATO Allies and Global Partners
President Obama met with Estonian President Toomas Hendrik Ilves and Estonian Prime Minister Tavi Roivas in Tallinn, Estonia on September 3. The visit reinforced the close ties between the United States and Estonia, which are rooted in our shared values, ideals, and interests.
04.09.2014, The White House, Office of the Press SecretaryPM
Symbolic meeting of best friends
Having touched down in Tallinn, at dawn yesterday, the US President Barack Obama was moving about a tiny area of the city – between the Kadriorg park and city centre.
03.09.2014, Oliver KundPM
Govt counts money for public pay rise
A testing stone for the coalition, at its initial joint talks about next year budget today, will be allocation of public servant wage rises.
02.09.2014, Tuuli KochPM
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
Paldiski to get cleansed of radioactive waste
Under the soviet rule, a nuclear submarine training centre was built in Paldiski, near Tallinn. Once the occupation forces pulled out, radioactive waste was left behind. Yesterday, the government decided to grant over €2m to find out the amount thereof – and how to make it safe.
The budget brings quite a headache
Money «pre-eaten» by costly coalition promises and nearly nonexistent economic growth.
18.08.2014, Kadri HansaluPM
Editorial: a delicate European problem called Viktor Orbán
A headache indeed – the increasingly autocracy-minded statements and the ever tightening cooperation with Putin’s Russia by Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán. The issue being: how united is Europe in its values, firstly, and secondly in bridling the warlike neighbouring Kremlin. Obviously, the latter is searching for weak links in Europe. Alas, the still economically troubled Hungary and its populist-type anti-Brussels PM provide for one.
Work capacity reform delayed
Yesterday, Riigikogu social commission received amendments to work capacity reform bill by coalition MPs whereby the latter desire to raise the income level triggering cuts to work capacity benefits and to postpone entry into force of the law by half a year till January 1st 2016.
12.08.2014, Anette ParkseppPM
State temptation fails to woo
€7,600 grant can’t tempt a young jurist to toil in Ida-Viru County.
11.08.2014, Oliver KundPM
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.