News & Analysis

European Commission questions necessity of Tallinn-Helsinki tunnel

Henrik Hololei, the European Commission’s director-general for mobility and transport, has warned the Chinese investors ready to finance a tunnel linking the Estonian capital Tallinn with the Finnish capital Helsinki that they must act in accordance with European Union rules.

“All investments that come to Europe from third countries are welcome if they are guided by European rules,” said Mr Hololei.

His comments come just a few days after FinEst Bay Area Development, the company behind the tunnel, announced that it had secured 15 billion euros in financing from China’s Touchstone Capital Partners for the project.

Mr Hololei also questioned the necessity of the tunnel.

“We are speaking of an investment in the range of 15-20 billion euros, even though today we have ship connections which ensure relatively fast transit from Tallinn to Helsinki. I am absolutely certain that if this tunnel should materialise, it will not make things cheaper in any way for the passenger,” Mr Hololei added.