Tax board having difficulty giving away clothes for free

A selection of Klementi clothing inventory held by the MTA since the company went bankrupt 9 years ago.
A selection of Klementi clothing inventory held by the MTA since the company went bankrupt 9 years ago. Source: ERR

The Tax and Customs Board (MTA) is having difficulty finding takers for a free consignment of clothes dating back to the bankruptcy nine years ago of Klementi, Estonia's oldest clothes-maker, according to a report on current affairs show "Aktuaalne kaamera" Friday night.

According to a report, improvements in standards of living have meant that people no longer want free clothes, with blouses and dresses numbering some 10,000 which had been kept in MTA storage warehouses up to now, going without a home.

"At the end of last year, AS Schenker asked for the goods left in the customs warehouse to go to the state, an offer which, once we had reviewed the goods, we decided to accept them," said Arvids Tisler, Treasury Chief at the MTA.

The clothes, inventory the MTA took on after Klement went bankrupt, were offered to municipalities for free distribution to both orphanages and others in need, but only eight municipalities took the MTA up on the offer, meaning the bulk of the items, or around 9,000, may well have to be destroyed. Nevertheless, the MTA had never had to redistribute such a volume of clothing in the past.

On the question of whether another issue was the clothes had simply become dated, Tisler said that many had still been seen as attractive to the municipalities which expressed an interest, with woolen sweaters and tops a particular draw.

The MTA redistributing surplus goods has happened before, Tisler went on.

"Last year, we distributed bicycles to those in need, and we were able to hand out over 100 of them to families in need. We also distributed heating fuel some time ago," he added.

In the case of the clothing, this is to be redistributed by those local municipalities, and any other organizations such as not-for-profits, which have taken the MTA up on the offer.

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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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