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Developers in Tallinn prepare a new wave of shopping malls

THIS PUBLICATION HAS 20 COMMENTS
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Tax the wankers and build schools, daycare centers and such instead... Reply to the comment answer
~Mr. Marx [05.01.2012, 11:20]
You mean tax them like they do in the UK and US where the rich actually pay very little in taxes?
~Taxman [05.01.2012, 16:35]
or maybe you could talk about other countries besides your selective choices of the UK and the US. Like maybe Finland, Sweden, Denmark, Norway eg the Nordic countries Estonia aspires to.
~IRS [05.01.2012, 16:40]
Ah, yes. The Scandinavian countries where the upper tax brackets are so high that the wealthy just move their wealth to offshores and also pay little in the way of taxes.
~@IRS [05.01.2012, 19:33]
Do they? That must explain the abject poverty of these countries and the fact that their governments, starved of tax revenues, can't provide great education, healthcare, and social services.
~perkele [05.01.2012, 20:09]
So let me get this straight. In the free-market UK and US the rich avoid paying taxes. On the other side of the spectrum, in the welfare state Nordic countries the rich avoid paying taxes. So what point are you making? That rich people always find a way to avoid paying taxes, so don't bother taxing them?
~strange logic [05.01.2012, 20:17]
The rich in America are notorious for finding (legal) ways of avoiding paying taxes and that hasn't stopped the USA from being the most powerful country on the planet. Heck, Obama has just signed a $662 billion defense bill for 2012. How much is your country spending on defense this year?
~@perkele [05.01.2012, 23:54]
So what point are you trying to make, mr "look at how the rich avoid taxes in the uk, us,norway, sweden, finland denmark, any other country I care to name etc"? I'm not quite clear. Let's NOT "tax the wankers"?
~:-O [06.01.2012, 13:44]
You have to find a way to tax them so that they can not avoid paying just by moving their money and/or business operations out of country. This is a major problem the world over. Just saying 'tax the wankers' accomplishes nothing except adding to global warming.
~@ [06.01.2012, 14:54]
No but it's a start!

And to be fair, countries all over are getting tougher on tax evasion, look at all the pressure on Swiss banks lately.

My viewpoint is, building so many of these shopping centres does very little for the country as a whole, ok it provides some low-salary service jobs but that's about it. Maybe the case shouldn't be so much about taxing these "wankers" at higher rates but I would be happy to see some sort of tax incentives for business endeavors that are geared towards production and export and raising the overall wealth of the country which I firmly believe an overabundance of glossy shopping centres does NOT provide.
~:-O [06.01.2012, 18:03]
There's a pretty easy solution in this case: increase the property tax on land zoned for retail. Property taxes in Estonia in general are quite low compared to other countries anyway.

I'm skeptical of all these new malls. I doubt they'll be adding any shops that don't already exist in the other malls. As for location, does anyone in Tallinn live more than a 10-minute drive from an existing mall?
~ameeriklane [06.01.2012, 18:15]
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Oh no - don't start to tax the capitalists to make more human society. Better to build shopping centers - maybe teenagers can sell themselves there like they do in Poland Reply to the comment answer
~Shop till you drop [05.01.2012, 15:08]
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China has 1.3b people and they have entire cities, apartment buildings and shopping malls that stand virtually empty. Why? Because the average chinese worker can not afford to shop in the stores or live in the apartments that they helped build.

Estonia is in a similar situation. People go to the malls and walk around because basically there is very little to do during the winter months but they are not really buying anything.

I guess as long as the banks continue to lend money for constructing these malls... developers will continue to build them.

Take a walk around the malls and you see employees staring at their mobiles or computers. Reply to the comment answer
~kev [09.01.2012, 19:44]
You know, I think kev has got it spot on. Just spent Xmas New Year in Estonia, 2 weeks nearly, and while there were lots of people IN the malls - Viru Keskus, kaubamaja - it seemed more of a place to "hang out", stroll, get out of the cold, etc, rather than to shop. I concede certain places were busy of course - pharmacies, bookshops, coffee shops, R-kiosks - but most of the other places, particularly the high end designer shops had exactly what he described - bored looking employees doing little. I really think there there is still a lot of slack in the system and quite surprised that building even more malls is considered "the way forward".
~agree with kev [10.01.2012, 00:26]
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I agree with ameeriklane, a new shopping mall ain't exactly what this country needs - not only in Tallinn, but also Tartu which must have one of the larger per capita mall spaces there is. But if they build it, people will go to it I suppose. Reply to the comment answer
~ibble_obble [17.01.2012, 01:21]
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I'm in Estonia off and on during the year. I am an American. While in Estonia I notice the large number in the malls. What are they doing? Looking! Personally, I believe as long as cheap money is available to investors they will build. There is a maxim in the U.S. if you invest in anything, use other people's money, not your own. You see so many businesses elect Bankruptcy without blinking in the U.S. Either getting off Scot free, or renegotiating their loan and leaving lenders holding the bag or lenders only getting pennies on the dollars lent. Again, speculators, especially Mall speculators are in it for the quick Dollar or Euro. "Take your money and run" is another saying. They have little incentive to stay in it with their own money. Labor is cheap in the service sector. It looks good on paper and bragging rights but it is only a sign of decay from the inside out. Watch out Estonia or you will slip into the category of the PIIGS. Instead, invest in infrastructure and building "THINGS" and the employment they provide. Or, just be consumers and Service Sector hash slingers like us Americans. Reply to the comment answer
~Ken [28.01.2012, 17:19]
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Six new malls seem quite excessive. Surely, all of them won't see the light of the day. I can understand the addition of another two or so, but does Tallinn really need more shopping centers? I could walk to two of these major malls from my apartment in the summer in only 10 minutes (Ülemiste and Viru Keskus), and it's not like bus transportation is hard to get by in the city... Reply to the comment answer
~Michael [13.02.2012, 21:54]
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~Jean [16.07.2012, 14:10]
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