Climate ministry fined over €430,000 for vacating rental property early

The Ministry of Climate.
The Ministry of Climate. Source: Siim Lõvi /ERR

The Estonian Ministry of Climate, which has moved from a small office space to the so-called "superministry" building which formerly housed the Ministry of the Environment, will pay a penalty of €430,600 for the early termination of its rental contract. However, according to the climate ministry, the move will nevertheless lead to annual savings.

Last year, the Ministry of the Environment moved from Narva maantee in central Tallinn to the Rocca Ärimaja building on Paldiski manatee. The office space it had previously occupied was deemed too large for the ministry to allow more of its employees to work remotely after the coronavirus pandemic.

A three year lease for the space in the Rocca Ärimaja building was signed last January.

Following the formation of the current Estonian government this spring, the Ministry of Environment became the basis for the new Ministry of Climate. However, according to Keit Kasemets, secretary general of the Ministry of Climate, the ministry would not have been able to fit into the Paldiski maantee space, as its reorganization involved increasing the number of staff by over 100.

"The Ministry of Climate has 184 employees in the joint building, while in Paldiski maantee there were 90. Working in two buildings would have been the most cost-effective solution," said Kasemets.

Moving the Ministry of Climate to the shared so-called "Superministry" building will not increase the overall size of its rental payments and, according to the ministry, will also reduce the estimated amount of rent paid per employee.

The termination of the lease at the Narva maantee property resulted in a penalty of €434,600 plus VAT. Rent for the Paldiski manatee building is €605,000 per year and the estimated cost of housing the same number of jobs in the shared building is €390,000 per year. An additional €215,030 will be saved on utilities.


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Editor: Michael Cole

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