There are no particular restrictions for foreigners acquiring fixed assets in Estonia and the legal processes are fairly simple.
If planning to rent, below are the indicative ranges for rents (excluding VAT and operating expenses) in the major towns of Estonia for class A and B1 office premises, medium-sized retail units in major shopping centers, and new and renovated warehouses (EUR/sqm per month).
A class office 14.0-17.0 EUR/sqm
B1 class office 9.5-14.5 EUR/sqm
Medium-sized retail in major shopping centers 20-48 EUR/sqm
New and renovated warehouses 3.9-5.0 EUR/sqm
A class office 12.5-15 EUR/sqm
B1 class office 9-12 EUR/sqm
Medium-sized retail in major shopping centers 10-32 EUR/sqm
New and renovated warehouses 4-5.0 EUR/sqm
A class office 9-12.5 EUR/sqm
B1 class office 5.5-7.5 EUR/sqm
Medium-sized retail in major shopping centers 8-28 EUR/sqm
New and renovated warehouses 3.7-4.7 EUR/sqm
B1 class office 5.1-6.5 EUR/sqm
Medium-sized retail in major shopping centers 8-24 EUR/sqm
New and renovated warehouses 3.5-4.5 EUR/sqm
Estonia is the knowledge economy leader among the EBRD regions, doing particularly well in the digital infrastructure subindex, earning scores higher than the OECD comparator countries’ mean score.
Named ‘the most advanced digital society in the world’ by Wired, ingenious Estonians are pathfinders, who have built an efficient, secure, and transparent ecosystem that saves time and money.
Estonia aims to be one step ahead with innovation and boasts a full digital ecosystem, world-class cyber-security, and first commercial 5G networks available.
Building e-Estonia as one of the most advanced e-societies in the world has involved continuous experimentation and learning from our mistakes. Estonia sees the natural next step in the evolution of the e-state as moving basic services into a fully digital mode. This means that things can be done for citizens automatically and in that sense invisibly.
The Estonian power system consists of oil shale fired power plants in North-East Estonia, combined heat and power plant near Tallinn, wind parks, and hydro plants. The Estonian power grid is connected to Russian and Latvian ones, as well as to the Nordic grid (via two maritime cables).
|Live electricity and gas flows to and from Estonia|
The power system of the Baltic States is currently technically part of the Integrated Power System/Unified Power System (IPS/UPS) of Russia. The strategic goal and big challenge of the Baltic States is to disconnect their power systems from the IPS/UPS of Russia and join the Continental European power grid and frequency area by 2026.
The price of electricity comprises of four components: electricity, network service, renewable energy support, and excise duty. The price of electricity on the open market can be followed through Nord Pool Spot.
Water supply and wastewater services are provided by local water companies. For example, in Tallinn, the cost of one cubic meter of water for industrial use is 1.79 € (excluding VAT).
Gas is imported from Russia and underground gas storage in Latvia. Industrial gas is distributed to customers through pipelines, distribution stations, and gas pressure reduction stations. The price of gas consists of gas, network service, and excise duty. The price of industrial gas is subject to negotiations based on annual total consumption.
The Estonian and Finnish natural gas transmission system operators Elering AS and Baltic Connector Oy are developing the Balticconnector transnational gas pipeline to interconnect the Estonian and Finnish gas transmission networks. Studies carried out have highlighted the significant socio-economic benefits of the project for both sides and other Baltic countries.
Estonia has a highly developed telecommunication and IT infrastructure. A fiber-optic backbone network has been built throughout the country. Two competing 10 Gbps optical networks are being built by competing service providers, being among the first such networks in Europe. The providers hope to be able to provide internet speeds of 10 Gbps to at least 40 percent of the households in Estonia within the next few years. At the same time, Estonia is covered by digital networks providing wireless internet. Internet service providers offer fast wireless connections with 4G covering almost the entire country and some commercial 5G networks already operational in the biggest cities.
Estonia’s main international airport is located in Tallinn, the nearest European capital to Asia. There is another international airport in Tartu and regional airports in Kuressaare, Kärdla, and Pärnu.
The country has a well-developed port infrastructure. The ports are ice-free and easily navigable all year round. Railway connections allow cargo delivery from seven ports. Besides, there are free trade zones located at three of the major ports – Muuga, Sillamäe, Paldiski. The full list of ports, including those serving vessels more than 24 meters in length can be found in the Port Register.
The rail infrastructure is going to develop rapidly in the following years. Estonia’s current rail gauge is compatible with the railway networks in Eastern Europe and Russia. In the following years, an additional rail connection will link Estonia with Central and Western Europe. The project, called Rail Baltica, is one of the biggest investments in the years to come in improving the travel opportunities of Estonian people as well as developing business and trade, tourism, and the exchange of goods.
Estonia has a good quality road network, designed and constructed to all EU-standards, with easy ground transport access to our EU neighbors, as well as Russia.
In the following years, a new rail connection will link Estonia with Central and Western Europe. The project, called Rail Baltica, is one of the biggest investments in the years to come in improving the travel opportunities of Estonian people as well as developing business and trade, tourism, and the exchange of goods.
The railway route will ensure speeds of up to 249 km/h (passenger) and 120 km/h (freight) and will provide the opportunity to travel comfortably and quickly to Latvia and Lithuania, Central Europe, and further. An interactive map of the future rail network with additional details on the current status of its components can be found here.
There is a number of industrial parks with pre-developed modern infrastructure that welcome manufacturing and logistics companies. The parks have a lot to offer to different businesses and developers – tenants receive a wide choice of premises and services and, in many cases, the possibility to customise their site section to their specific needs.
These are some of the largest industrial parks in Estonia:
There are three free trade zones in different parts of Estonia that are logistically in great locations near highways, railways and ports.
The free trade zones are established by the Estonian government, and monitored by the Estonian Tax and Customs Board. All free zones in Estonia are open to foreign direct investments.
Goods in the free trade zone are considered as being outside the customs territory. Goods brought to the free zone for later re-export are not subject to VAT, excise nor customs duties. Also the Estonian speciality – no tax on reinvested profits – preserves in free trade zones.
The following map gives an overview of Estonia’s largest industrial parks (if interested in a longer list in specific regions, please contact us), its free trade zones, ports, airports and highways. As you zoom in, smaller roads and Estonia’s extensive rail network will appear on the map.
In order to find more information about future rail connections to Western Europe, please see the separate Rail Baltica page.
Besides cross country skiing and rally, filing income tax declarations has become one of the favourite national sports for Estonians. Each year, new records are broken as Estonia has the world’s best tax system: simple and online, quick and enabling fast payouts of returns.
Both, personal and corporate income tax can be declared more quickly than almost anywhere else in the world.
What is it like to run a business in Estonia? How to benefit from the e-solutions and the efficiency of our business culture? What are the opportunities in specific sectors? Who to partner up with?
The Estonian Investment Agency’s team is happy to help you via its complimentary e-Consulting service, organize online or offline follow-up events such as virtual investment visits and guide you through the fairly simple process of investing in Estonia.