Internal restructuring
Eesti; Kirde-Eesti;
Location of affected unit(s)
Manufacture Of Chemicals And Pharamceuticals
Manufacture Of Chemicals And Chemical Products
20.14 - Manufacture of other organic basic chemicals

200 jobs
Number of planned job losses
Job loss
Announcement Date
11 December 2014
Employment effect (start)
11 December 2014
Foreseen end date


Viru Keemia Grupp (VKG), the largest manufacturer of shale oil and chemicals in Estonia, has reviewed upwards the number of redundancies initially announced in December 2014 (76) bringing them up to 200.

Last December the company announced that it would halt production in two of its technology shale oil refineries in Kiviter. This move was to affect 76 jobs and was down to falling global oil prices and high shale oil price the company buys from state-owned Eesti Energia.

In early January 2015, the company stated that the initial number of redundancies was not sufficient and that the number of employees losing their job would be around 200; however, they did not specify the exact number.

The company has to buy shale oil from Eesti Energia, which sells the oil to VKG for much higher price than it charges its own power plants. At the same VKG cannot use their own mines to extract oil because their extracting permit is fulfilled. The company is trying to increase their mining volume, but has not suceeded so far.

As the company is one of the largest employers in east Estonia and its redundancies will have a socio-economic negative impact on the region, the state is looking for  solutions and announced on 8 January that it is trying to urgently change the resource fee charging system so that the tax would not be fixed, but this would depend on global oil prices.


  • 11 December 2014: Aripaev
  • 7 January 2015: Delfi Ärileht
  • 8 January 2015: Pohjarannik


Eurofound (2014), Viru Keemia Grupp, Internal restructuring in Estonia, factsheet number 78090, European Restructuring Monitor. Dublin, https://restructuringeventsprod.azurewebsites.net/restructuring-events/detail/78090.