bnn.lv Latviski   bnn-news.com English   bnn-news.ru По-русски
Tuesday 07.04.2020 | Name days: Helmuts, Zina, Zinaīda
LatviaLatvia

Antāne: Saeima’s National Economy Committee has heard the transit industry’s cry

FaceBook
Twitter
Draugiem
print
(No Ratings Yet)

Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUInga Antāne, president of Baltic Association – Transport and Logistics, is satisfied with the decision that was made at the recent meeting of Saeima’s Economic, Agricultural, Environmental and Regional Policy Committee, asking the Transport Ministry to develop and present a sustainable development strategy for the industry and putting an emphasis on raising the competitiveness of railway tariffs.

«Transport Ministry’s and Latvijas Dzelzceļš’s act that everything is fine in the transit industry has become very dangerous for Latvia’s national economy. An analysis of statistical indexes for the past three years, the volume of cargoes handled by Latvian ports has been declining sharply. On top of that, there are no signs that would suggest the situation may improve in the near future,» notes BATL president.

Continuing, she adds: «To avert a crisis in the transit industry, Transport Ministry and the government should act now and make decisions that would improve the industry’s competitiveness, otherwise consequences caused by a crisis would have a negative impact on the national economy as a whole, as well as budget revenue and residents’ welfare. The meeting of the Saeima committee proves that the industry’s cry has finally been heard.»

BATL notes that the size of the fee for railway infrastructure use has earned a great degree of criticism. This is because the fee forms 70-75% of the end price, limiting carriers’ options to offer clients competitive prices. A country’s transit corridor’s efficiency depends on the country’s long-term policy. In its current form, it is hard to call it successful, because there is a lack of a unified policy that would fit the real situation.

The association also presented the Saeima committee with its proposed action plan to help raising the industry’s competitiveness.

BATL has also asked the committee to consider the actual situation in the industry, not the volatile «relatively small cargo volume increase». If the government does not make important decisions and start acting fast, it is likely it will be necessary to reconsider budget expectations and consider new social support programmes for people working in the industry.

«It is foolish to think that a worsened situation in the industry will not create serious problems for Latvia’s economy. Latvia is a railway superpower – we are a leader in Europe when it comes to railway length per capita. For Latvijas Dzelzceļš to afford such an infrastructure, it is necessary to carry 60 million tonnes of cargoes every year. According to our estimates, we are already 15 -25 million tonnes short. We also expect this gap to grow even more in the coming years,» says Antāne.

BATL president also notes that «this is why the government should consider coming up with more competitive tariffs and analyse if different mega-investment projects, such as the electrification project, leave an impact on tariffs. EC report on tariff competitiveness released several years ago pointed to problems with Latvia’s tariffs.»

BATL had previously reported submitting its action plan to the prime minister, transport minister, economy minister, finance minister and the council of Latvijas dzelzceļš earlier in September. This was done because the talks with Transport Ministry had reached a dead end. The association, having assessed the situation on the market and the region, cannot agree with the ministry’s opinion that the situation is stable and that there is no need to perform any additional steps to save it.

«For years now Transport Ministry continues acting unknowing of the problems present in the industry and become involved in political and inter-governmental activities, as it is done in neighbouring countries. Incompetent and ruinous decisions, formal responses, lack of communication with the industry has led to a situation when Latvia’s second largest industry, which contributes a considerable amount to the GDP and employs tens of thousands of people, is on a brink of a crisis,» BATL previously said.

BATL also allows that documents prepared on a government level were prepared chaotically and based on outdated and far too optimistic analysis of the situation in the industry. On top of that, the industry is governed by unfair competition conditions for different ports, and there is a lack of political desire to sort the industry and turn down, at least temporarily, different risky and unreasonable investment projects. It is also necessary to improve participation of government and high-rank officials in the attraction of new strategic partners, not merely take part in different ‘red ribbon’ events.

Ref: 225.109.109.2441


Leave a reply

Australia quashes child abuse convictions against cardinal Pell

A court in Australia has overturned child sex abuse convictions against cardinal George Pell after he was found guilty and received a prison term, British news portal The Guardian reports.

Education and Science Ministry considers not cancelling centralized exams

Latvia’s Education and Science Ministry considers the option to not cancel centralized exams, especially for 12th graders, as reported on Tuesday, 7 April, by Education Minister Ilga Šuplinska during a meeting with Saeima’s Education, Culture and Science Committee.

Estonian government in two minds on cutting public spending to help economy

Should public spending be cut to help restore the economy? Two of the three parties in the Estonian government have opposing views on this as economic recovery is increasingly discussed, Estonian public broadcaster ERR reports.

Riga International Airport plans to lay off 500 employees

Because of consequences caused by COVID-19, Riga International Airport plans to lay off 500 employees, as BNN was informed by the company.

Poland planning to hold presidential election as postal ballot

The Polish presidential election in May should be held as a postal ballot, the country’s legislators have decided. Opponents of the idea argue that this means putting public health at risk, British-Canadian news agency Reuters reports.

COVID-19 update in Baltics. 548 infected in Latvia, 880 in Lithuania, 1 149 in Estonia

The total number of confirmed coronavirus COVID-19 infection cases in Latvia has reached 548, increasing by six in the past day.

Latvian president urges not to sort idleness benefit recipients based on tax debts

When assessing whether or not a company meets requirements for idleness benefit eligibility, Latvia’s President Egils Levits urges the government to not sort them based on tax debts.

British PM Johnson treated from COVID-19 in intensive care

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has been moved to intensive care in London with his COVID-19 symptoms worsening as the outbreak is claiming more lives in the United Kingdom, British news portal The Guardian reports.

Riga City Council snap elections pushed back to 5 September

The ruling coalition in Latvia has agreed to push back Riga City Council snap elections to 5 September, as journalists were told by politicians after a meeting of ruling parties on Monday, 6 April.

US death toll of COVID-19 nears 11 000

The US, which is the country with the highest number of confirmed COVID-19 infections, has on Tuesday, April 7, reached a total number of COVID-19-related deaths of 10 986, according to the US John Hopkins University and German public broadcaster DW.

Prime Minister says Latvia will neither enhance nor relieve restrictions

We do not plan to enhance restrictive measures, but neither do we plan to relieve restrictions – the storm is not over. Nevertheless, we are on the correct path, said Latvian Prime Minister Krišjānis Kariņš in an interview to Latvijas Radio.

Spanish coronavirus death toll drops for fourth day in a row

In Spain, for the fourth day a row, the number of COVID-19 related deaths per day has decreased as the country has the most confirmed cases in infection in Europa, BBC reports.

Recovery from COVID-19 confirmed for 16 people in Latvia

So far 16 people in Latvia have made a successful recovery from COVID-19, as reported by Latvian Disease Prevention and Monitoring Centre (SPKC) Infectious Diseases Risk Analysis and Prevention Department director Jurijs Perevoščikovs at a press-conference on Monday, 6 April.

Kilometre-long freight train from China to pass through Latvia this week

This week a freight train pulling 100 containers forming a kilometre-long chain will pass through Latvia on its way from China to Kaliningrad Oblast, as BNN was told by Latvian Railway.

Design work commences across the entire Rail Baltica route in Latvia

Rail Baltica project management joint company RB Rail has signed two contracts on behalf of Latvia’s Transport Ministry for design and design supervision services on the remaining sections of Rail Baltica route in Latvia, as BNN was informed by the company.

Meduza: Head of Russian doctors’ organisation arrested during delivery of protective equipment to hospitals

The chairwoman of the Russian Doctors’ Alliance has been hit after being arrested by police as she was in a group of activists trying to deliver personal protection equipment to hospitals in the Novgorod region of Russia, Meduza news portal reports.

NEPLP wants 1.6 million euros for media to overcome COVID-19 crisis in Latvia

The National Electronic Mass Media Council has prepared historically the largest state support programme for electronic TV and radio to ensure uninterrupted production of domestic content and broadcasts during COVID-19 crisis. The volume of support is estimated at 1.6 million euros, as reported by NEPLP.

Estonian top virologist: Peak of COVID-19 will be flattened out

Estonian virologist Irja Lutsar, who is part of the Estonian government’s working group of COVID-19 has forecast that the peak point of the outbreak of the novel coronavirus in Estonia will be long, Estonian public broadcaster ERR reports.

COVID-19 infection numbers in Baltics. 542 in Latvia, 843 in Lithuania and 1 108 in Estonia

The number of confirmed COVID-19 infection cases in Latvia has reached 542, increasing by nine new cases in a day. Lithuanian media, meanwhile, report 843 coronavirus infection cases.

Kazāks: the virus causes Latvia’s economy to drop 2-3 percentage points every month

Because of restrictions adopted to restrict the spread of COVID-19 in the country, Latvia’s economy drops 2-3 percentage points every month, said governor of the Bank of Latvia Mārtiņš Kazāks in an interview to Latvijas Radio on 6 April.

British Prime Minister hospitalised 10 days into coronavirus infection

In the United Kingdom, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has been admitted to hospital ten days after receiving positive tests for COVID-19, British public broadcaster BBC reports.

Universities in Latvia have no plans for entry exams if central exams are cancelled

If central exams in Latvia are cancelled, universities have no plans to organize entry exams, because this would require additional resources.

Number of COVID-19 infections increase in the 50 to 59 age group in Latvia

The number of COVID-19 infections in the 50 to 59 age group has nearly doubled in the past week, reaching 83 cases, according to the latest data from the Disease Prevention and Monitoring Centre.

Greece introduces quarantine in two migrant centres

Authorities in Greece have introduced the restrictions of a lockdown in two migrant centres after people tested positive for COVID-19, German public broadcaster DW reports.

COVID-19 update in Baltics. 533 infections in Latvia, 811 in Lithuania, 1 097 in Estonia

The number of confirmed COVID-19 infection cases in Latvia has reached 533 so far, increasing by 24 new cases in one day. Lithuania, meanwhile, reports 811 confirmed cases.


Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!