Skip to content

Viking Line blames job cuts on air pollution law

The Åland-based shipping company Viking Line has begun redundancy talks with all of its 500 landside employees in Finland. It blames the planned job losses on additional costs that will be incurred by the introduction of tougher laws on airborne pollutants.

Viking Amorella karilla.
Viking Amorella ajoi karille Ahvenanmaalla lauantaina. Image: Rajavartiolaitos

Viking Line has not specified how many jobs will be cut, but says the number will likely be around 25. The talks, which began on Monday, do not involve its shipboard employees or those in Sweden.

Viking Line says the biggest reason for the planned job cuts is a tougher air pollution law that takes effect next year. The company estimates that the EU’s Sulphur Directive will push its fuel costs up by 15 to 20 million euros annually.

The directive lists the Baltic Sea as a sulphur emission control area, where the maximum sulphur content of the fuels used by ships must be limited to 1.5 percent.

The line, which operates passenger ferry traffic between Finland, Sweden and Estonia, is based in the Åland Islands, a semi-autonomous Finnish province.

“We estimate that our fuel costs will rise by 15 to 20 million euros in 2015,” says Viking Line communications director Johanna Boijer-Svahnström. “Six of our seven vessels will switch to using marine diesel. Our fuel consumption will rise significantly,” she adds.

The redundancy talks are part of a larger cost-cutting programme. The Viking Line Group is to publish its 2013 year-end report on February 13.

Latest: paketissa on 10 artikkelia