State-owned companies have paid a total of 4.9 million euros in sponsorship deals in the past five years, a study by the Ministry of Finance found.
Education was the greatest recipient, receiving 38.6 percent of all state-owned sponsorship funding between 2010-2014. Sport with 32.7 percent was second.
The most generous companies were:
Eesti Energia – 2.6 million euros
Port of Tallinn – 1.37 million euros
State Real Estate – 345,000 euros
Elering – 206,000 euros
Eesti Loots – 134,000 euros
State companies have set limits on how much money they can use for sponsorship purposes, but those quotas are rarely filled. Only 18.2 percent of what was allowed to spent, was spent. That figure was 39.9 percent the previous year.
Agris Peedu, a deputy secretary general at the ministry, said the trend is that state-owned companies are sponsoring rural life and education more, and that sponsorship money is being used more conservatively.
The topic of state companies sponsoring athletes has had a negative side too, in recent years. Neinar Seli, the former head of Port of Tallinn's supervisory board, was fined after the company made donations to the Estonian Olympic Committee, which he also heads.
Editor: J.M. Laats