bnn.lv Latviski   bnn-news.com English   bnn-news.ru По-русски
Monday 19.02.2018 | Name days: Zane, Zuzanna
LatviaLatvia

Chaos in waste management industry; still many uncertainties

FaceBook
Twitter
Draugiem
print
(No Ratings Yet)

Soon the times when Riga residents, house managers and business men were able to choose the ones to transport their waste will become a thing of the past. The last year’s decision made by the Constitution Court forces a change in the order in which waste is managed in different cities. There are many uncertainties right now, but either the municipality will announce waste managers in the middle of summer or it will take up this responsibility on its own, as reported by Latvian Radio.

It is noted that Riga currently has an open market on waste transport. House owners and businessmen are free to choose companies to sign contracts with. The market is considered free because there are only six firms that are allowed to work in Riga. L&T, ex-prime minister’s Andris Skele’s family company Vides pakalpojumu grupa (previously known as Veolia and Nelsens), Swedish Ragn-Sells and Eko Riga. There are also contracts valid until 2020 with Eko Kurzeme and Cleanway, but they do not offer any services.

Many market players benefited from the fact that Riga has some of the lowest waste disposal tariffs in Latvia. But the opposition of the system like to call in arguments that areas of work overlap: i.e., some streets have trucks of different companies roam the same streets, as well as claim that there is not enough supervision over waste management.

The previous Riga City Council repeatedly tried to gain more influence over the waste business. But while the politicians were incapable of doing it, this was instead achieved by the Constitution Court.

Last week, in an interview to Latvian Radio, Mayor of Riga Nil Ushakov declined the fact that there were any contracts signed in Riga without contests. The mayor promised to work on making sure nothing changes in the waste management industry. But what Ushakov said is far from reality. Because of his leave it was impossible to find out exactly what he meant by saying that no changes are planned for the Riga waste management industry. But the partners of the ruling coalition are already preparing new waste management rules, because the decision of the Constitutional Court cannot be ignored.

Lobbel firm had a litigation in the court. The municipality forbid the company to participate in waste management. The case ended up at the Senate. The latter asked the opinion of the Constitutional Court. The court concluded that the responsible regulation unjustifiably protects the contracts signed for long periods of time.

The decision of the Constitutional Court provides that such contracts lose their authority starting from July 2013. This is because such contracts create unjustified advantages for specific groups of people and notably troubles public interests. According to the manager of Riga City Council’s Housing and Environment Committee Vyacheslav Stepanenko, a good solution would be to divide Riga into several separate areas, with separate contests.

According to current practice, competition benefits residents. Areas that held contests have the lowest tariffs. Low expenses are found in Pieriga municipalities. However, areas with municipal companies usually have the highest tariffs.

Maris Kucinskis of the Latvian Large Cities Association explains this with population density and close vicinity of landfills.

 


Leave a reply

Week in Lithuania. Lithuania celebrating centennial of statehood

Leaders of European countries gathered in Vilnius on Friday, February 16, to celebrate the 100-year anniversary of restored statehood, and festive events were taking place in many cities and towns of Lithuania.

BNN summary of the week: minister threatened with dismissal; ABLV Bank scandal

BNN offers a summary of this week’s topical news in a variety of categories: Change; Fight; Court; Problem; Decline; Commentary; Future; Proposal

SRS uncovered violations in 169 inspections at catering companies last year

In 2017, the State Revenue Service (SRS) performed a total of 989 inspections at 212 catering companies. This includes 182 thematic inspections for 125 taxpayers. Violations were uncovered in 169 inspections. The most common violation was manipulation with cash registers, according to information published by SRS.

Russian tourists often decide to celebrate International Women’s Day in Riga

To satisfy growing demand for bus tickets from Russia to Latvia for the week when 8 March is celebrated, Lux Express plans to organize additional buses between St Petersburg and Riga.

FCMC to investigate ABLV Bank again; no operational restrictions applied to the bank

Latvia’s Finance and Capital Market Commission (FCMC) has plans to perform an additional investigation at ABLV Bank in the next couple of weeks, says the commission’s manager Pēters Putniņš, adding that no operational restrictions have been applied to the bank so far.

Study: overall sense of happiness in Latvia is record-low

60% of Latvian residents feel happy. Although this is a good index, there has been a general decline of the sense of happiness, according to a study performed by Amigo mobile network operator and SKDS to assess the level of happiness of Latvian residents.

Raid reveals some taxi drivers in Riga do not have valid driver’s license

A raid was performed by the State Revenue Service and Riga Municipal Police to check taxi service providers in the capital. Authorities uncovered a total of 81 violations in 48 cases, BNN was informed by SRS.

Estonia sea ice crash: last missing body found

Nine days after a van with six people inside drove onto the ice of the Baltic Sea in south-western Estonia, the body of the last victim has been found.

Delna invites immediate investigation of claims about ABLV Bank’s money laundering schemes

The decision by US Finance Ministry’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) to apply sanctions against ABLV Bank for involvement in money laundering schemes and bribery of officials was not a surprise. It is a sign for acute need to continue improving investigative and supervisory institutions’ ability to prevent money laundering through Latvia, as noted by Delna – Society for Openness.

Estonian income tax should be simplified, parties believe

The existing income tax scheme in Estonia should be simplified, three parties in the Estonian Riigikogu find, but there are differences in opinion as to maintaining the current state budget income. Meanwhile, the opposition Reform Party has voiced backing for an annual tax-free income of 6,000 a year to every earner.

Baltics propose increasing member states’ contributions to EU budget after Brexit

Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia invite European Union member states to increase contributions to the EU budget after 2020 in order to make sure available funds do not drop after UK’s exit.

Instagram obeys Russian internet censor to block content on corruption allegations

In the atmosphere of the March Russian presidential election, social network Instagram has submitted to the demands of Russia's internet censorship body and blocked in the country content with corruption claims voiced by Russian opposition figure Alexei Navalny.

Teenager charged with U.S. school shooting has confessed

A day after a tragic school shooting in Florida, the U.S., where 17 people have been killed, the suspect 19-year-old Nicolas Cruz has confessed to police.

Snowfall expected for weekends in Latvia; sky to become clear again next week

On Friday, 16 February, weather in Latvia will be dictated by a small cyclone, which will approach the country from Sweden. Because of that, the sky will be cloudy and snowfall will come to many areas. The cyclone will not be strong. With that, wind speed will remain relatively slow, as reported by Latvian State Environment, Geology and Meteorology Centre.

How will Lithuania look like in another 100 years?

In order to tell it, one needs to know the past and the presence. Yet the predicting how the centennial celebrations-engulfed Lithuania will look like in another hundred years is not easy at all even for political and business pundits.

Minister: Latvian authorities will perform an investigation about FinCEN report

Responsible Latvian institutions will perform an investigation in relation to the report from US Finance Ministry’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN). In this report, the institution accuses ABLV Bank of bribing Latvian officials, says Foreign Affairs Minister Edgars Rinkēvičs.

Party calls for extraordinary meeting of Riga City Council’s Transport Committee

To invite officials to explain the illegal decision in regards to the mutual agreement between Rīgas satiksme’s and Rīgas mikroautobusu satiksme’s, political party For Latvia’s Development urges opposition factions of Riga City Council to call an extraordinary meeting of the Transport Committee, as confirmed by the party.

Meteorologists warn about -25° C frost in Latvia in March

Global Forecast System predicts a possibility of -25° C frost in Latvia’s eastern parts at the beginning of March.

Latvian residents remain dissatisfied with their families’ financial state

For several years in a row the majority of Latvian residents remain dissatisfied with their families’ financial state, according to results of Baltic International Bank Latvian Barometer.

Latvia’s cosmetics market – 160 million euros

Latvia’s cosmetics market is worth approximately EUR 160 million. Similar to Europe, skin and hair care products are the most popular ones. The smallest market proportion is occupied by decorative cosmetics, according to data from Latvian Cosmetic Manufacturers Association (LCMA).

RB Rail CEO says interference «from above» has been in line with the law so far

We have seen interference «from above» in RB Rail’s activities. The law was not breached, however. With that, there was no need to report anything to law enforcement institutions, RB Rail CEO Baiba Rubesa told Ir magazine.

15 Estonians die in flu period from complications

The number flu patients in Estonia is currently increasing. So far during this year's flu season, 15 people have passed away with flue-related complications.

Economy Minister asked to fix increasing electricity bills; parties threaten with dismissal

Latvian Economy Minister Arvils Ašeradens has to fix the mistakes that have caused electricity bills to increase, said chairman of Free Trade Union Confederation of Latvia Egils Baldzēns in an interview to 900 seconds programme of LNT.

Third of beer consumed in Estonia in 2017 bought in Vidzeme, Estonian factory breweries evaluate

Saku and A. Le Coq, two largest beer makers in Estonia have not published their exact sales numbers for the last year, but have been quick in stating that about one third of all beer drunk in Estonia was purchased in Latvia.

U.S. hit by another mass shooting at school

In the U.S., a high school has been attacked in the state of Florida, where gunshots have taken the lives of 17 people. Local police has detained a suspect – a 19-year-old man, who had been expelled from the same school.

Newest comments