Coronavirus spring wave emergency transport cost state half-a-million euros

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On board the MS Romantika, one of the ferries used to transport trapped Estonian citizens back home during the initial spring COVID-19 wave. Source: Tallink

Emergency transport during the initial spring wave of the coronavirus pandemic which repatriated Estonian citizens and residents, and ensured the continued flow of freight, as borders closed cost the state a total of nearly half-a-million euros, Baltic News Service reports.

The government has agreed to transfer the exact sum of €460,793 to the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications, which oversaw the bulk of the logistics, from its reserve.

Extraordinary shipping lines were set up, not only between Tallinn and Helsinki, but also between the North German port of Sassnitz and the Estonian port of Paldiski. Ferries operated by Tallink plied this route several times in March and into April, as Poland closed its borders ahead of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, making overland travel to Estonia by car from western Europe all but impossible, and trapping hundreds of Estonian citizens and residents on the German side of the border.

The Estonian government's emergency situation issued in response to the pandemic ran from mid-March to mid-May.

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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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