Latvian industrial concern UPB Holding has announced that it saw a 35 percent hike in turnover last year. According to provisional data, the company reached 79 million Euros (55.3 million lats) in consolidated turnover in 2011, Nozare.lv was informed by UPB Holding Marketing Director Ilze Freimane. In 2010, the concern posted 50.8 million Euros in turnover, and in 2009 58.2 million euros. UPB Holding management said 2011 was a very important year for the company, which marked its 20th anniversary and was honored with the prestigious “Ruban d’Honneur” award and medal during the “European Business Awards” event in Barcelona. The company edged out more than 15,000 competitors in the “Import/Export” category. UPB Holding incorporates more than 40 enterprises, the largest among them being Aile Group, MB Betons Group, RK Metals Group, UPB Energy Group and UPB Nams Group.
Minister of the interior Ken-Marti Vaher is pushing for legal amendments to make sure that providers of critically important services, such as banking and telecom, cannot move their servers abroad. The ministry has already drafted amendments to the Emergency Act that would make it more difficult for banks to move IT infrastructure administration operations completely off Estonian soil. The move is targeted against largely Swedish-owned banks that are centralizing operations in their home country, including Swedbank, which was planning to move its banking data operations to its Sweden by 2015. According to the ministry, the amendment is necessary to ensure that banks, for instance, ensure provision of critical services, such as cash circulation and functioning of domestic payments. Ministry undersecretary Erkki Koort has said that the state needs the leverage to keep banks from repatriating the parts of their servers that ensure that money is available from ATMs and bank branches. According to statistics, about half a million card payments are made in Estonia every day and account for 62 percent of all national payments in Estonia.