Estonia blamed for 73 million unsold beers in Finland ({{commentsTotal}})

Source: Photo: Postimees/Scanpix

MaRa, the Finnish Hospitality Association, said Finnish restaurants have sold 73 million beers fewer in the past decade due to low alcohol prices in Estonia.

Finland has increased tax on alcohol often and tax on beer is now five times higher than in Estonia, Finnish daily Kauppalehti reported.

Veli-Matti Aittoniemi, deputy head of the association, said alcohol sales in restaurants are decreasing each year and are currently half of what is imported by Finnish tourists traveling back from Estonia.

Aittoniemi said internal tourism is on the decline as Finns head to Estonia instead.

The trend is reversed in neighboring Sweden, where 52,000 new jobs in catering and tourism have been created in the past decade. Finland has lost 30,000 jobs during that period.

Estonia has also increased tax on alcohol, with the government promising annual alcohol excise hikes. Although there are no precise statistics on how much alcohol Finnish tourists buy in Estonia, it is believed to be around one-fifth of all sales in Estonia.

Editor: J.M. Laats

Opinion digest: Our plans do not have to bend to distorted Russophobia

In a recent opinion piece in Postimees, small business-owner and Reform Party member Vootele Päi responded to criticism sparked by Prime Minister Jüri Ratas' plans to attend a commemorative concert-service at the Estonian church in Saint Petersburg next month.

Kallas, Kasemets, Maasikas: EU is strong, no upside to losing the euro

Speaking on Vikerraadio's "Reporteritund" ahead of the 60th anniversary of the Treaty of Rome, Siim Kallas, Keit Kasemets and Matti Maasikas agreed that despite its prblems, the EU remained strong as a union.