airBaltic Estonian passenger numbers down 67 percent in 2020

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An airBaltic Boeing 737-300 at Tallinn Airport. Source: Martin Dremljuga/ERR

State-owned Latvian carrier airBaltic carried over 225,000 Estonian passengers in 2020, a 67 percent fall on the previous year, in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic and its accompanying restrictions.

airBaltic says it expanded its market share at Tallinn Airport from 21 percent to 27 percent during the troubled year, and flew over 1.3 million passengers across 22,300 flights from all three Baltic capitals.

The airline's route network still includes European and Middle-eastern destinations.

Company CEO Martin Gauss said that while the company did the best it could to keep flying last year: "In terms of future development, it is critical that airBaltic return to its growth plan as soon as the pandemic gets under control."

Gauss also noted that the new Reform/Center coalition has said maintaining flight connections is a priority and requires support. Estonia's own state-owned airline, Nordica, obtained a €30-million bailout last year, following European Commission approval.

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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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