The Port of Tallinn, Estonia’s biggest port authority, develops and administers the harbor infrastructure and manages the movement of cargo through the port. In the 1990s, the port authority was restructured to form a landlord type management, and the last cargo-handling operations passed to private ownership in 1999. Today, the Port of Tallinn does not own any cargo handling operations.
The Port of Tallinn includes five harbors: Muuga, Old City, Paljassaare, Paldiski South, and Saaremaa. All of the harbors are open year-round and offer depths up to 18 meters, allowing the port to accommodate all vessels that can pass through the Danish Straits. Muuga Harbor is the Port of Tallinn’s main cargo harbor, handling about 80% of total cargo volume for the Port of Tallinn. Almost 75% of the cargo through Muuga Harbor is crude oil and oil products, but it also handles dry bulk (grain, coal, and fertilizers) and contains a large free zone.
Muuga Harbor covers 524.2 hectares and contains 28 berths of a total 5.9 kilometers in length with alongside depths up to 18 meters. It can accommodate vessels up to 300 meters long and 48 meters wide. Muuga Harbor houses six terminals for liquid bulk cargoes, two multi-purpose terminals, and specialized terminals for containerized cargoes, dry bulk, grains, steel, and coal.
The Port of Tallinn’s Muuga Harbor’s container terminal has capacity for 215 thousand TEUs per year, and expansion plans will bring that to 500 thousand TEUs a year. The container terminal covers about 20 hectares and has railway lines for 25 railcars. The terminal also has four thousand square meters of sheltered storage space and a reefer container depot.
The harbor contains a total of 151 thousand square meters of warehouse area, 670 thousand square meters of open storage, and 11.5 thousand square meters of reefer warehouse. It also has capacity for storing 1.1 million cubic meters of oil and 300 thousand tons of grain.
The Old City Harbor is located at the gate of the Port of Tallinn’s medieval old town, and it is one of the most visited passenger ports on the Baltic Sea. For the last decade, the Old City Harbor has focused on serving passengers for all of Estonia, and it is Latvia’s gate for tourism as well. Located in the heart of the Port of Tallinn, it provides convenient access to the city’s historic center and is fully equipped for the comfort and enjoyment of the nine million passengers who visit there each year. The Old City Harbor facilities have grown with the growth in passenger traffic over the years.
The Old City Harbor covers 54.2 hectares and has 23 berths with a total length of 4.2 kilometers with alongside depth of up to 10.7 meters. It can accommodate vessels up to 320 meters long and 40 meters wide. It contains four passenger terminals and a mixed terminal. The Port of Tallinn’s Old City Harbor houses 10.4 thousand square meters of covered warehouse and 95 thousand square meters of open storage area.
Paljassaare Harbor, located hear the city center, has capacity to handle about three million tons of cargo per year, although it is much smaller than the Muuga and Old City Harbors. It is sheltered from both wind and waves, and vessels pass through an 800-meter canal to reach the docks. The Port of Tallinn’s Paljassaare Harbor specializes in handling mixed cargoes, cooking oil, oil and coal products, timber, and perishables.
Paljassaare Harbor covers 43.6 hectares and contains 11 berths with total length of 1.9 kilometers with alongside depth up to 9 meters that can accommodate vessels up to 190 meters long and 30 meters wide. The harbor contains specialized terminals for oil, cooking oil, coal, timber, dry bulk, and general cargoes. It includes 16 thousand square meters of covered warehouse area, 15 thousand square meters of reefer warehouse, and 105 thousand square meters of open storage area. It also has oil tank capacity of 42 thousand cubic meters.
Forty-five kilometers west of the Port of Tallinn, Paldiski South Harbor serves roll-on/roll-off cargoes, exports of local products, and transshipments of liquid bulk and metals. It is beginning to serve traffic in new cars. It is the largest of the three small harbors. It is home to regular passenger traffic with Sweden. Much of today’s investment is devoted to Paldiski Harbor due to its potential for growth. New roads and railway networks are expanding.
The Paldiski South Harbor covers 114.7 hectares and contains eight berths with total length of 1.4 kilometers with alongside depth up to 13.5 meters. It can accommodate vessels up to 230 meters long and 35 meters wide. Terminals in the harbor serve passengers, roll-on/roll-off and general cargo, timber, metals, biodiesel, and automobiles. The harbor contains 12 thousand square meters of warehouse area and 270 thousand square meters of open storage. It also has oil tank capacity of 259.9 thousand cubic meters.