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Supreme Court dismisses Transaviabaltika complaint about airplane age limit

A Jetstream 32 operated by Transaviabaltika.
A Jetstream 32 operated by Transaviabaltika. Source: Jüri Norkroos

The Estonian Supreme Court has dismissed the appeal by the Lithuanian air carrier Transaviabaltika, in dispute with the Estonian state over the maximum age requirement of 20 years in the procurement on the Tallinn-Kuressaare flight route.

The Public Procurement Review Committee (VAKO), the Tallinn Administrative Court, and the Tallinn District Court had all previously ruled in favor of the Road Administration (Maanteeamet). On May 8, Transaviabaltika appealed to the Supreme Court, which also decided to dismiss the complaint.

Therefore the Road Administration has postponed the procurement to June 4. The carrier is being sought for four years, the estimated cost of the procurement is €16.2 million.

Transaviabaltika brought its complaint regarding the maximum age of planes – its own fleet includes planes manufactured in the 1990s and thus a few years outside the limit – on December 30 last year, with VAKO dismissing the complaint in mid-January, saying that the Road Administration had convincingly argued that including the age requirement of the aircraft in the procurement was not an arbitrary decision, but a thought-out consideration.

In its complaint, Transaviabaltika alleged that the aircraft's age requirement would be used to procure the state-owned company, Regional Jet OÜ, which has the only newer aircraft out of three companies interested in procurement.

The Road Administration itself justified the inclusion of the maximum age in the procurement, as requested by the Saaremaa rural municipality, in order to improve the quality of air service.

The Road Administration also estimates that newer aircraft are more economical, as well as being environmentally friendly.


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Editor: Anders Nõmm

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