Union says 100 more people to be laid off at Narva power plants ({{contentCtrl.commentsTotal}})

Eesti Energia's Narva power stations.
Eesti Energia's Narva power stations. Source: Mihkel Maripuu/Eesti Meedia/Scanpix

Up to 100 people will be made redundant at Narva's Eesti Energia state-owned power plants, the regional energy trade union has said, adding that workers have been "deceived".

According to the union, Eesti Energia has started to lay off people at the power plants. The company says no major redundancies are expected.

Union leader Andrei Zaitsev said the company intends to lay at least 20 people off in February, ERR's Russian news portal reported.

Zaitsev said employees have been deceived. The union has not yet decided whether to go on strike.

"At the moment, it is not clear who to blame, or who to ask for explanations. We believe that everything is in the hands of the government," Zaitsev said. He said he doesn't see the point planning a strike as the power plant is not working anyway.

Member of the Board of Eesti Energia Raine Pajo said as electricity generation has fallen due to the warm winter and cheap Russian electricity, the company is looking to make cuts which include redundancies. "But today there is no reason to talk about major collective redundancies yet," he said.

The government promised in August 2019 that even when idle, the Narva power plants of Eesti Energia would be kept on standby to be able to produce at least 1,000 megawatt-hours of electric energy per year until 2023. Under such arrangement, 350 people at most would lose their jobs.

Before that, in June, Minister of Economic Affairs and Infrastructure Taavi Aas had warned that increases in the price of carbon dioxide emission credits may result in 800-1,000 people losing their jobs in Ida-Viru County.

Aas said that around 500 people had been handed redundancy notices already, and according to the unions over 6,000 people, including family members and people active in support functions, may lose their livelihood if the worst case scenario materializes. 

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Editor: Helen Wright

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