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picture News January, 23 2019
image: To Sillamäe and Kunda To Sillamäe and Kunda

Friday, May 18th, members of SCCE and the German-Baltic Chamber of Commerce went on a study tour to Sillamäe and Kunda.

Our first stop was Silmet, one of the biggest rare metal and rare earth metal producers in Europe. One of their three factories in Sillamäe originates from 1927, when the Swedish company Estniska Oljeskiffer AB (Estonian Oil shale Ltd) founded an oil shale processing plant on the present location of Silmet’s factories.

We continued to the huge port of Sillamäe. Located just 25 km from the EU-Russian border, it’s actually the most eastern port in the EU, and capable to handle all cargo groups from oil-products and dry bulk to containerized cargo. The port is now actively marketing its resources internationally.

Looking back to 1946, Sillamäe didn’t exactly work for making itself known, neither internationally nor domestically. On the contrary, the town disappeared from the maps and became sealed off from the rest of Estonia as the Soviet Union began processing uranium in the very secret Factory nr 7, that year. The production severely damaged the environment, and though a huge sanitizing took place 1999 – 2008, parts of the radioactive polluted area had to be solidly covered and will not be uncovered for at least another 100 years.

Our final stop was Kunda Nordic Cement. Their production dates back to 1871, and the company is today offering constructional cements, crushed limestone as well as Kunda port services to customers from Estonia and abroad. Major ongoing projects in the factory include increased usage of alternative fuels for the cement production. Already today, their fuel partly consists of recycled waste fuel from Ragn-Sell’s waste treatment plant in Tallinn, opened last autumn.

On behalf of the SCCE Council, I would like to thank our hosts and guides from Silmet, the port of Sillamäe and Kunda Nordic Cement for a very interesting study tour. My thanks also go to the German-Baltic Chamber of Commerce for a very good cooperation and support in arranging our joint tour.


Kristiina Sikk

SCCE Ombudsman

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