Estonians working in Finland can travel by ferry between Tallinn, Helsinki

  • 2020-03-19
  • BNS/TBT Staff

TALLINN – The head of the emergency situation in Estonia, Juri Ratas, issued an order on Wednesday which enables employee commuting for the purpose of work for those people permanently residing in Estonia who go to Finland for work.

Concurrently, the Finnish state affirmed that it will allow the employee commuting of such people. 

Valdo Kalm, CEO of Estonian state-owned port company Tallinna Sadam, hailed the decisions of the prime ministers of the two countries as moves which help to preserve people's jobs and ensure the functioning of trade. 

"In the present complex and unexpected situation it is very important for ship traffic on the  Tallinn-Helsinki line to continue. Our people need jobs, businesses must be able to continue their activity as much as possible, and supply chains must work. Only in this way can we ensure the possibility for the economy to start rising again after a major crisis is over. We hope that the people working in Finland have familiarized themselves with valid rules, preserved their health, and are ready to continue their work-related trips," Kalm said. 

With the prime minister's order, people who, according to the population register, live in Estonia but work in Finland will be able to arrive in Estonia without adhering to the 14-day quarantine requirement if they show no signs of illness.

The order also includes a restriction according to which it will be possible to travel between Estonia and Finland once per seven days without a quarantine requirement, meaning that returning to Estonia cannot take place more frequently than once a week.

Employment is understood to mean employment under both an employment contract and an authorization agreement as well as a public official within the meaning of Estonian law and its equivalent in the meaning of Finnish law.

Also entitled to enter Finland are workers who have not registered their right to residence in Finland, but who have a Finnish employment contract to show. Such workers are considered cross-border workers within the meaning of the EU law, to whom Finland has not applied the quarantine requirement. 

With an order of the prime minister of Finland, also transit via Finland is allowed.    

At present, the Tallink vessels Megastar and Sea Wind, Viking Line's Viking XPRS, and Eckero Line's Finlandia continue plying between Tallinn and Helsinki under changed schedules.