Entrepreneurship minister promises new convention center, 20,000 more tourists (14)
The new minister of entrepreneurship, Urve Palo, has promised to build a new convention center in Tallinn, develop support measures for rental sector development and restore production equipment purchase support measures.
The planned conference and convention center would bring another 20,000 tourists to Estonia every year, create 400 new jobs and generate 20 million euros of profit, Palo said in an interview to Estonian daily Postimees.
She said that she has also taken steps to make sure that the state offers support to companies that need to purchase machinery and production equipment. "I definitely want to push through this machinery-equipment support measure, because once a product has been designed, developed or invented, it has to be manufactured as well, and we cannot export by relying on handiwork alone.
Another big project that Palo hopes to see through is a development of support measures that would invigorate the rental market. These could include financing the building of new rental apartments in the rural areas, and offering loan guarantee in the cities.
Palo has previously stated that the state-supported housing program is needed in order to replace the depreciated and run-down Soviet-era building blocks. According to Palo, three times less new houses and flats are being built in Estonia, than needed, to replace the old lodgings. “My argument is that every single family who chooses to stay in Estonia, will be a bigger investment for the country in a long term. If proper housing helps them to stay here, instead of emigrating to Finland or Sweden, it is very important for Estonia. Plus, a research conducted by the academics at the Tallinn University of Technology, clearly shows that if the state invests a third of the cost to build a social housing, then all of it will be returned by the tax revenues later,” Palo said, while in the last government.