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Waterways charges in Estonia are too high

Waterways charges in Estonia are way too high and Port of Tallinn is about to come up with its proposals for lowering them soon, the company's CEO Valdo Kalm said LETA/BNS on Friday.

"Competition has become very intense, also between ports. We are keeping a close eye on port fees," Kalm said in his remarks at the Maritime Conference in Tallinn. "One component that is very important is waterways charges, on which we have to enter into negotiations with the state," he said.

The CEO of Port of Tallinn said that when it comes to waterways charges, Estonia is very much out of the competition.

"We have a common interest with shipowners to solve this issue. We have our proposal ready in the drawer and we intend to go and discuss it with the state," he said.

As regards port fees for cargo vessels, the port company already has differentiated the rates by the tonnage of the vessel. "In passenger carriage we must give equal treatment to all clients, in this the competition law doesn't give a lot of options for flexibility," he said.

The CEO of passenger shipper AS Tallink Grupp, Andres Hunt, said that Tallink pays the Estonian government more than 100 mln euros per year. Of this 25 mln euros is port fees, five mln euros waterways charges and the rest state taxes.

"This is not a small amount," Hunt said.

(Source: http://www.baltic-course.com/eng/transport/?doc=128392)


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