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The Logisticians hosted Tallinn Cluster Club at Muuga

Tallinn Cluster Club held the final annual event at the Muuga Harbour on 19 December.

Having the event at the Muuga Harbour had symbolic significance in the promotion of the logistics services and activities of the Cluster – namely, the Harbour celebrated its 26th birthday on that date. Taking into account the overall long history of Estonian maritime activities, this harbour is undoubtedly a young one.

Due to its advantageous location and solid rail and road connections to the hinterlands, the harbour is playing an important role in the Estonia’s transit trade. At present, the Muuga Harbour is the largest and deepest cargo port in Estonia, being one of the most modern harbours in Europe with its depth and state-of-the-art terminals. The Muuga Harbour is one of the five constituent harbours of the Port of Tallinn. The turnover of the Muuga Harbour adds up to three quarters of the total cargo turnover of the Port of Tallinn and amounts to about 90 per cent of the total goods in transit passing through Estonia.

The end of the year is usually the traditional time for looking back at the year behind and wrapping up the tasks accomplished. Andres Valgerist, Illimar Paul and Margot Ots shared with the club members their lessons learned during the two years of activity of the Estonian Logistics Cluster.

In looking back at the activities of the Estonian Logistics Cluster, the common perception was that the co-operation between the companies in the sectors has improved remarkably. Many of the companies that in the past were seeing themselves as fierce companies are gathering around the same table today. Together the joint objectives and plans are discussed – how to improve the visibility of the companies and market them abroad, how to promote the significance of logistics and therefore increase the overall competitiveness of the Estonian economy as a whole.

Our competitors are very well represented at all the logistics sector events – exhibitions, seminars, conferences all over thee world promoting their channels and advantages of their logistic location. Due to the joint marketing activities of the Cluster, Estonia has so far been able to keep up with the closest competition. We have not been able to secure an exhibition stall everywhere; however, as the visitors we have been able to canvass the participants and to find contacts. The popularity of the exhibitions at the logistics and transport sector is ever-growing and in order to market the Estonian logistics sector, we’ll have to be present wherever possible. The experience of the Estonian Logistics Cluster indicates that the best visibility is achieved not by separate stalls, but by joint representation – a shared stall for the state, the sector and the transport corridor. A good example of the representativeness of the joint national exhibition stall is the fact that the Estonia’s activities at TransRussia have resulted in the main prize for two consecutive years already.

One of the noteworthy parts of the Cluster joint marketing activities have been our study tours. During the past two years we have presented the advantages of the Estonia’s logistics sector in China, Korea, Taiwan, Singapore, Russia, Kazakhstan, Turkey, Canada, US, and naturally in more nearby Europe. Despite of the state and Enterprise Estonia are working together to promote the awareness of various sectors of Estonia in the world, we have repeatedly received feedback at our various meetings that Estonia should promote itself globally even more. Hence we have developed a deep conviction that wider joint marketing is much needed – our businesses are too small at the global scale to do this work on their own.

One of the major objectives of the Cluster has been to improve the international competitiveness of our companies, increase the export turnover, to attract foreign investments, and to help to create new jobs. As the outcome of its two year research activities, the Cluster has established three product families having the potential to be the goods to facilitate Estonia’s development into a distribution hub of the region. In addition there is a separate two year program aimed at industrial enterprises encouraging Finnish enterprises to transfer al or part of their production facilities to Estonia. The emphasis is predominantly on Finland due to majority of foreign companies in Estonia being Finnish owned and Estonia’s geographic location and business environment are favourable for increasing the number of such companies.

In order to identify the scope of impact of transit on Estonia’s economy, we have prepared the terms of reference for respective research and have started to include partners into commissioning such a research.

Besides all the topics featured above, the members of the Estonian Logistics Cluster team presented the product catalogue and the general brochure of the Cluster as well as other marketing materials used in the Cluster promotion to the club members.

The two first years of activity have proven that with the founding of the Estonian Logistic Cluster we have been able to lay a solid foundation for the vital intra-sector co-operation and together we are a force to be reckoned with in promoting Estonia’s logistics location. MIT professor Yossi Sheffi deems the logistics clusters in particular to be the drivers of growth. It is simultaneously a huge recognition as well as an obligation to keep up the good work that has been started as only consistency is a key to success.


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