Uutinen 07.01.2016 11.41 fi sv en

A Memorandum of Understanding, which was signed on 5 January 2016, will improve connections between Helsinki and Tallinn. According to Minister of Transport and Communications Anne Berner, the objective is to increase collaboration especially in the development of customer-oriented transport services.

- Traffic flows between Helsinki and Tallinn will increase and travelling between the cities will become more prevalent in everyday life, which is why it should be as easy as possible. We have major plans for the future, but it is more essential to kick-start solutions that can be implemented rapidly and economically by means of, for instance, flexible regulation and experimentation, says Minister Anne Berner.

The aim is to immediately improve the existing shipping connections and travel chains by, for example, increasing cooperation at the planning phase. The themes of cooperation to be promoted this year include a public transport route planner, car parking, and a joint travel card for the cities. Opportunities afforded by digitalisation and intelligent transport systems and services will also be seized.

A potential long-term solution to shorten the distance between the cities is an underwater railway tunnel, the preconditions and impacts of which will be explored further.

Representatives of the Cities of Helsinki and Tallinn, the Helsinki-Uusimaa Regional Council and the Harju County Government together with the ministries responsible for transport and communications matters in Finland and Estonia signed the Memorandum of Understanding in Tallinn on 5 January 2016.

In order to implement the Memorandum of Understanding, a working group comprising representatives from the ministries, regions and cities will be established to promote the projects and inform about progress.