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Postimees and Õhtuleht chiefs expect Eesti Päevaleht to also drop Mondays

Estonian newspapers.
Estonian newspapers. Source: Anna Aurelia Minev/ERR

The editors-in-chief of two of Estonia's leading daily newspapers, Postimees and Õhtuleht, believe that Eesti Päevaleht will eventually follow them in opting not to publish paper editions on Mondays. Postimees and Õhtuleht will discontinue their Monday editions from January due to rising costs announced by state-owned delivery service Omniva.

 "I wouldn't bet on it, but I don't think it will be very long before (Delfi Media's daily newspaper) Eesti Päevaleht announces that they will (also) change their publication days from Tuesday to Saturday,  said Postimees Editor-in-chief Priit Hõbemägi on Vikerraadio show "Uudis+." Eesti Päevaleht currently publishes daily from Monday to Friday.

"We'll just have to wait a little, but I'm pretty certain that it will happen," said Hõbemägi.

Hõbemägi and Õhtuleht Editor-in-chief Martin Šmutov both stressed that their respective newspapers' recent decisions to stop printing Monday editions were made due to financial considerations.

Šmutov also pointed out, that once Õhtuleht and Postimees stop publishing on Mondays, it will also become more expensive for fellow daily newspaper Eesti Päevaleht to continue doing so, as the outlet would end up absorbing the additional costs.

"It would be surprising if now one newspaper were to (additionally) take on the (delivery) costs of both Õhtuleht and Postimees," Šmutov said.

Both Šmutov and  Hõbemägi stressed, that Omniva's decision to announce a 22 percent rise in delivery costs would be unmanageable in light of other recent price increases.

Šmutov said, that while in recent years Omniva has increased the cost of a bundle by between nine and eleven percent, this time the rise would be twice as high.

However, both editors-in-chief both confirmed that their respective newspapers had no plans to stop publishing their Saturday editions time soon.

"At the moment, I don't see any danger of that, because it's very large and there's a lot of high-quality material, we're putting a lot of resources into it," Hõbemägi said about Saturday's Postimees, highlighting that many subscribers only receive the newspaper's weekend edition.

"We certainly don't plan to make any changes there, or if we do, it will only be to improve the content, if at all possible," Hõbemägi stressed.

"I think that the Saturday editions, of both Õhtuleht and Postimees, are the safest," said Šmutov. "Even if there is some kind of catastrophe in the world, Saturday papers will be the last thing to disappear," he said.

Postimees and Õhtuleht announced on Thursday and Friday last week respectively, that price increases by state-owned delivery company Omniva would force them to stop publishing paper editions of their respective newspapers on Mondays, starting from January. Against the backdrop of other price increases, Omniva's decision ultimately made it untenable for either paper to continue publishing on Mondays.

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Editor: Michael Cole

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