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Wednesday 20.09.2017 | Name days: Marianna, Ginters, Guntra
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BNN summary of the week: Loginovs stays at the Freeport and Riga Coach Terminal to leave

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUBNN offers a summary of this week’s topical news in a variety of categories: Change; Business; Fight; Decline; Truth and Growth.

Change: Relocation of Riga Coach Terminal to the ‘other side’ becomes more realistic

The relocation of Riga Coach Station to the ‘other side’ is becoming more and more realistic, as a proposal has been voiced to relocation Riga International Coach Terminal to Tornakalns. The planned construction of a transport hub in Tornakalns has already attracted funding of EUR 7 million from the European Cohesion Fund, as reported by Transport Ministry.

Mayor of Riga Nils Usakovs previously told Latvijas Radio that the coach terminal will likely be relocated, and that it would be necessary to combine it with suburban and public transport stops in Riga. One option would by building a transport hub beneath the new Central Station. Another includes relocating the terminal to Tornakalns, where it is also planned to build Rail Baltic Station.

Full article here: http://bnn-news.com/relocation-of-riga-coach-terminal-to-the-other-side-becomes-more-realistic-163778

Business: Government supports continuation of talks about purchase of shares in Conexus Baltic Grid

On Tuesday, 11 April, the Cabinet of Ministers supported continuation of talks with Conexus Baltic Grid shareholders about a possible procurement of shares in the company.

The state will evaluate its possible involvement in Conexus Baltic Grid to ensure energy security and form a regional gas market among Baltic States and Finland by 2020, BNN was told by Economy Ministry.

It will be possible to achieve the government’s goal by securing infrastructure development (Estonian-Finnish Balticconnectorun and Lithuanian-Polish GIPL connecting infrastructure), achieving high market efficiency and equality in competition, as well as securing price equalization with Central Europe.

Full article here: http://bnn-news.com/government-supports-continuation-of-talks-about-purchase-of-shares-in-conexus-baltic-grid-163780

Fight: Usakovs calls Latvia’s education minister a liar and fraudster

Baiba Brigmane, representative of Unity’s faction in Riga City Council, has requested to add the matter on Riga City Council’s behaviour in improving the quality of education in Riga’s general education facilities to the agenda of the next meeting of the city council’s Education, Culture and Sports Committee.

She also requests inviting to the meeting the management of schools in which result index of exams in the 2015/16 school year was below 30%.

In response to the claim that schools in Riga have low-quality education, Mayor of Riga Nils Usakovs posted a statement on this Facebook page, saying: «The Education Minister – is unprofessional and, possibly, a fraudster».

Full article here: http://bnn-news.com/usakovs-calls-latvia-s-education-minister-a-liar-and-fraudster-163913

Decline: Loginovs to continue working at Riga Freeport as advisor for Pecaks

Riga Freeport’s long-time CEO Leonids Loginovs will not stop working after retiring. He intends to continue working at the Freeport as the new CEO’s advisor, as reported by LTV.

Loginovs has been appointed as a freelance advisor to acting CEO Aigars Pecaks. Loginovs’ wage in the new post will be EUR 3,500 a month after taxes.

Full article here: http://bnn-news.com/loginovs-to-continue-working-at-riga-freeport-as-advisor-for-pecaks-163772

Truth: Estonian PM recognises gender pay gap as serious problem

It is necessary for Estonian society to address gender pay gap, said to be worst among EU nations, Estonian Prime Minister Jüri Ratas has evaluated.

«According to Eurostat data, our pay gap of 26.9 percent puts us at the very top in the European ranking; this situation has remained unchanged for several years now. Our message here should be clear and unambiguous — men and women must receive equal wages for the same job,» noted Ratas published on April 10, the European Equal Pay Day, as cited by the ERR.

Full article here: http://bnn-news.com/estonian-pm-recognises-gender-pay-gap-as-serious-problem-163696

Growth: World Bank asks Latvia to introduce labour force tax progressiveness

Latvia has to improve its tax system in order to offer its residents better services, say specialists of the World Bank in the report on Latvia’s tax system.

To reduce social inequality, the World Bank suggests introducing progressiveness for PIT in addition to social support for people with low income.

The World Bank notes – if Latvia wishes to realize residents’ hopes for better public services in healthcare, education and transport field, the country should consider the option to increase budget revenue by improving its tax system.

It is mentioned in the report that income tax and benefits are the most appropriate tools for the reduction of inequality. Progressiveness in PIT in addition to social support for people with low income could help reduce inequality in Latvia.

According to the World Bank’s estimates, introduction of three levels of PIT rates – 19%, 23% and 33% – and non-taxable minimum could help reduce inequality and raise budget revenue in Latvia.

Full article here: http://bnn-news.com/world-bank-asks-latvia-to-introduce-labour-force-tax-progressiveness-163881

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  1. alex says:

    Мошенник Писарчук Сергей кинул Гайкa Магакелянa почти на миллион долларов, развёл на покупку завода владельца компании «Афина Паллада».

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Judins says parliamentary committee «is going nowhere»

The work performed by Saeima’s investigative committee in charge of oligarch case does not fit the established goal to investigate and analyse possible state capture, says member of the committee and Unity’s Saeima faction Andrejs Judins.

Study: residents criticize development of Latvia general situation the most

With the coming of autumn, residents’ optimism has declined significantly, according to results of Baltic International Bank’s Latvian Barometer.

Number of occupied jobs in Latvia up 9.3 thousand

At the end of the first half of 2017, in Latvia there were 903.2 thousand occupied posts, and, compared to the end of the first half of 2016, the number has grown by 9.3 thousand or 1.0 %.

Latkovskis says sometimes questionable votes are lobbied in Saeima in secret

There have been cases sin which questionable votes were being lobbied in the parliament in secret. Compared with last year, this tendency is demonstrating growth, said Saeima deputy Ilmārs Latkovskis in an interview to Latvijas Avīze.

E-governance advocate Ilves comments on alleged Estonian ID card vulnerability

The ex-President of Estonia Toomas Hendrik Ilves, who has been an active advocate of e-governance has emphasised that a possible security risk with Estonian ID cards has not put that the country's reputation as an e-state at risk.

Delna invites Saeima to support initiative to liquidate option to abstain from votes

Society for openness Delna invites Saeima deputies to support public initiative and liquidate the option for deputies to abstain from votes.

82% of Estonian households use mobile internet at home

As to the choice of internet connection in Estonia, 82% of Estonian households use mobile internet at home, Estonian statisticians have estimated.

Baltic Express attracts railway cargoes; decline noted for other carriers

Railway cargo carrier Baltic Express more than doubled its cargo volumes in the first seven months of 2017. Meanwhile, other two cargo carriers – LDz Cargo and Baltic Transit Service – have suffered cargo declines. Baltic Association – Transport and Logistics notes that it is ringing the alarm over the situation in the industry, not over the interests of its members.

Survey: more than half of Latvian residents are half-serious about their health

44% of Latvian residents use all medicine prescribed by their doctor when they get sick, according to data from Mana Aptieka&Apotheka health index.

In pictures: Zapad drill in full swing

BNN offers you an insight into the quadrennial join military training of Belarus and Russia, which have been inspected in person by Russian President Vladimir Putin and Russian Defence Minister Sergey Shoygu.

Rinkēvičs invites India to open an embassy in Latvia

During the 72nd session of the UN General Assembly in New York on Monday, 18 September, Latvian Foreign Affairs Minister Edgars Rinkēvičs met with his Indian counterpart Sushma Swaraj. The two discussed political and economic cooperation between the two countries.

Norwegian top policeman sentenced to 21 years in prison for aiding hashish contraband

A court in Norway, a country often recognised as one of the least corrupt globally, has convicted a senior Norwegian police officer to 21 years in prison after finding him guilty of taking bribes and helping drugs contraband.

Road Transport Administration: transport planning in Riga does not reflect region’s scale

Road Transport Administration plans to speak with Riga and Pierīga administrations about the fractured public transport system in the region, says the administration’s chairman Kristiāns Godiņš.

Mass Ryanair cancellations expected

Irish airline Ryanair has warned that due to an internal planning problem up to 400 000 flights could be cancelled in the European Union.

Legislative draft proposed to simplify referendum procedure

The Central Election Commission has registered Open Management Partnership in Latvia signature collection association’s legislative draft submitted for the fourth time. This legislative draft proposes cancelling amendments of 8 November 2012 to the Law on National Referendum, Legislative Initiative and European Citizens’ Initiative, as reported by the commission.

Greece to lift wine tax due to low revenue

The government of Greece plans to submit draft amendments to lift the country’s year-old excise tax on wine, Greek Minister for Agricultural Development and Food has stated.

Reirs: pension budget will increase by EUR 160 million next year

Next year, pension budget will increase by more than EUR 160 million, says Latvian Welfare Minister Jānis Reirs. He explains that the total pension budget will be EUR 1.93 billion, which means funding for next year’s pensions will be 9.19% higher.

Oligarch case’s parliamentary committee settles disputes with shouting

During a meeting of Saeima’s committee entrusted with investigating Oligarch case, a loud argument broke out between Unity faction member Andrejs Judins and publicist Imants Liepiņš.

IDB: it is too soon to expect corruption to go down in traffic monitoring field

Society’s condemnation of bribery is positive, but it is currently too soon to expect the problem of bribery in road traffic monitoring field to go down, admits Internal Security Bureau chief Valters Mūrnieks.

Apinis: Latvia’s Healthcare Ministry is intellectually weak

Pēteris Apinis, head of Latvian Association of Doctors, criticizing the reform plan, saying: «Just like the Napoleon cake has no Napoleon, the reform plan has no reforms.» He believes Healthcare Ministry’s intellectual potential declined in the past three to four years and that the institution in its current state is intellectually weak.

airBaltic performed 14,324 flights in summer

In August 2017, Latvian airline airBaltic carried 386,597 passengers or 21% more than it did in the same period in 2016, as BNN was informed by the airline.

Sudraba: deputy quotas matter will be resolved in officials’ offices this year

The matter of the so-called deputy quotas will be resolved in officials’ offices this time, deputy Inguna Sudraba of To Latvia from the Heart told Latvijas Radio.

Estonia should invest in long-term productivity, environmental protection – evaluates OECD

As Estonia’s economic recovery gathers pace, it is time to work for sustainable development by protecting the environment and looking for ways to increase productivity, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development has recommended.

Option to abstain from vote proposed to be liquidated to reduce possibility of hiding opinions

On Monday 18 September, a citizens’ initiative will be submitted to the Saeima to liquidate the option to abstain from votes in the parliament.

KNAB commences criminal process in state institution’s service

Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau has commenced a criminal process for, possibly, illegal activities in a state institution service.