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Trade Unions: Ida-Virumaa needs urgent help

BC, Tallinn, 24.01.2015.Print version
Estonian Trade Unions Confederation Head Peep Peterson urges the government to find solutions to the wave of redundancies that has recently hit the North East Estonian Ida-Virumaa county, LETA/Postimees Online reports.

"While the main cause of the problems is the sudden drop in oil prices, there are also government policies that deepen the crisis," Peterson found.


Peterson said that making thousands of people redundant is today not just a temporary economic setback of individual sectors but a major social security risk to Estonia as a whole.


"They could start with one government field session, during which the parties are heard, and they will not leave before some fruitful agreements are in place," said Peterson. "There would be no better election campaign than one that solves the acute problems that exist in reality already before the elections."


Several solutions have been mentioned in the press – linking mineral resource fees to the price of oil, distributing mining volumes across several years, companies forced cooperation in oil shale mining and modernisation support that enables to improve the effectiveness of the use of oil shale. The Trade Unions, however, estimate that the government lacks the ability to concentrate on tying together the various solutions and implementing them.


The largely industrial Ida-Virumaa region has gone though a number of redundancies recently, the biggest being shale oil producer Viru Keemia Grupp (VKG), that at the end of last year announced that due to the fall of oil prices and too high price of oil shale purchased from Eesti Energia it has to make hundreds of people redundant.

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