Potential coalition intends to improve domestic transport links

Centre chairman Jüri Ratas (left) and Isamaa chairman Helir-Valdor Seeder.
Centre chairman Jüri Ratas (left) and Isamaa chairman Helir-Valdor Seeder. Source: ERR

The Centre Party, the Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE) and Isamaa, who are currently engaged in ongoing coalition negotiations, all deem it necessary to ensure the availability of high-quality domestic transport links.

Consultations between the three parties on Tuesday focussed on issues related to public transport and infrastructure, spokespeople for the Centre Party said.

The potential government coalition supports conducting studies for the undersea tunnel project that would link Tallinn and Helsinki as well as an accessible and high-quality public transport network and paving roads.

Further talks are to be held on several issues.

Centre Party chairman and Prime Minister Jüri Ratas said that the potential coalition is to strive for accessible bus, rail, ferry and air links that would meet people's needs.

"Discussions also covered improving connections between the mainland and the islands," he said, adding that this would include the periodic dredging and deepening of the Rukki Channel between the mainland and the Western Estonian island of Hiiumaa, the country's second-largest.

The three parties also intend to ensure convenient, high-quality air service from Tallinn to Hiiumaa and Saaremaa.

According to EKRE chairman Mart Helme, the potential coalition also agreed that convenient and fast rail connections are to be established and better linked to other modes of transport, and that cooperation with Latvia for the establishment of a fast Tallinn-Tartu-Riga rail connection would also be looked into.

"We also have to review domestic rail links to ensure that they are fast, convenient and safe," Mr Helme added.

Roads a priority

Isamaa council chairman Sven Sester said that the party intends to establish fast domestic and international links.

"We consider it necessary to invest more in infrastructure to ensure a high-quality living environment," Mr Sester said. "When developing transport infrastructure, it must be kept in mind that the majority of people are predicted to use roads, cars and buses to move about." Thus, he added, transportation investments must prioritise road quality.

Editor: Aili Vahtla

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