Taking initiatives leads Tallinn turnaround

Bernie Baldwin

Overall infrastructure projections may have dropped, but growth fundamentals remain strong.

“After an aviation standstill of this magnitude, it is difficult to estimate what demand will be like and at which pace the travel industry will recover.” Eero Pärgmäe, chief commercial officer (CCO) of Tallinn Airport, is giving an honest opinion about the situation facing his company.

“We are happy about every route relaunch and new announcement as this will get the traffic going. Our main focus is on restoring core business and hub routes. Primary connectivity allows us to contribute to economic and tourism sector recovery,” Pärgmäe continues. “This will depend largely on the pandemic and on entry restrictions imposed by respective countries. Still, we have a positive outlook as we see airlines are willing to restart as soon as allowed by governments, even if operations in the near future are of a smaller scale than prior to the virus.”

Tallinn Airport has had to do some swift re-planning of its developments. “The COVID-19 pandemic has influenced our infrastructure investments; only strategic investments will now be carried out in 2020. The original investment plan of €42 million for 2020 has been decreased to €30 million,” reports Pärgmäe.

“We will continue planned investment into the phase II construction works of the Airside Area Development Project and will start reconstruction works at Pärnu Airport (which Tallinn Airport manages),” he adds. “To be prepared for the rise in passenger numbers in Tallinn, we will continue the design and construction of new preboarding areas in the passenger terminal and launch baggage handling area and baggage handling system extension works.”

The airport company also helped its food, beverage and shopping concessions as best as possible. “Tallinn Airport lowered rental fees for operators who had no choice but to close their units; we waived minimum concession fees for all operators. We did this to support community members who had no extra funding from government,” Pärgmäe confirms.

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