bnn.lv Latviski   bnn-news.com English   bnn-news.ru По-русски
Friday 25.05.2018 | Name days: Junora, Anšlavs
LatviaLatvia

Coastal cities acquire funds that were previously only available to rural regions

FaceBook
Twitter
Draugiem
print
(No Ratings Yet)

Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RULiepaja, Ventspils and Jurmala – these three Latvian cities are now able to use finances from the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund. This money was not previously available to them because it was mainly used in rural regions, De Facto programme of LTV reports.

The entire coast, except for Riga, is now considered fishing territory. Such changes were proposed by Agriculture Ministry and heavily defended by Agriculture Minister Janis Duklavs. This is no surprise, considering the ministry and the aforementioned cities are managed by representatives of the same party – Union of Greens and Farmers.

Jūrnieka ligzda [Sailor’s nest] is a leisure site created on the coast of the Baltic Sea. Its owners had submitted multiple projects during the previous fund period. All of them received support from the Fisheries Fund.

EUR 14 million will be available for the support programme in the current planning period. This money is divided among local action groups that accept and evaluate projects submitted by businessmen, associations and municipalities.

However, the money available for this planning period will have to be divided differently than usual. This time the programme and its funding are available exclusively to coastal regions.

In addition, Agriculture Ministry’s condition for this money to be used for the development of fields and villages located close to the coast was unexpectedly changed. Now this money is to be divided among three coastal cities – Liepaja, Ventspils and Jurmala. This came as an unexpected surprise for NGOs. ‘It was not possible to catch anyone red-handed. In any case, it would only be an opinion and viewpoint, but the process in which cities were added so suddenly and nearly over the course of a single night without first consulting local action groups may suggest that this decision had not undergone the usual democratic process and instead had been processed through a different set of doors,’ – says Chairman of Latvian Rural Forum Valdis Kudins.

At a discussion with the Fisheries Advisory Council, Agriculture Minister Janis Duklavs, defending the opportunity for large cities to gain access to finances of this fund, said that ‘LEADER programme is not available in large cities’. Agriculture Ministry attempts to justify its decision with the fact that Ventspils and Liepaja house the majority of people employed in the country’s fisheries sector.

Agriculture Ministry’s Fisheries Department Director Normunds Riekstins said: ‘Of course, the entire territory should be allowed an opportunity to develop. We would all be happy if our fisheries sector spanned the entire coastline and not be concentrated in certain points. But there are many risk factors involved. This includes fish stores and different problems with the market. We cannot forcibly create or create now and wait until everything dies later, because there would not be any point in developing something like that. Unfortunately, that is how we are in Latvia’.

But there is some controversy here. One of the main objectives of the action programme is to reduce inequality and support creation of jobs along the coast. Opportunities for cities are considerably larger. Those who have gotten their hands on finances are satisfied. Martins Abols, head of Liepaja City Council’s Development Office, notes: ‘One thing is certain – there was no such opportunity in the old planning period of the European Fisheries Fund. And it is clear that we are all happy and satisfied that Agriculture Ministry decided to listen to what large cities have been saying for a while – division of territories into rural areas and cities in regions for fisheries is not exactly correct.’

Two years ago, it was mentioned during one of the meetings that discussed the fund’s action plan that inclusion of the three aforementioned cities in territories important to fisheries would be ‘a political decision and such a matter will not be considered’. When proposals were finally submitted to the government, Environmental Protection and Regional Development Ministry protested against Liepaja’s, Ventspils’ and Jurmala’s inclusion. But arguments were not taken into account.

Ref: 102.109.109.5412


Leave a reply

Pyongyang after U.S. refusal still willing to enter negotiations

Pyongyang has stated that North Korea was still ready to engage in talks at any time in any form after U.S. President Donald Trump unexpectedly cancelled his meeting with the head of North Korea, Kim Jong-un.

Lithuania moves forward with tax and pension reform

The heavily amended bills on taxes and pensions will have a significant impact on the Lithuanian citizens’ lives if Seimas, the country’s legislature, approves for them in their current form.

Riga City Council decides not to discuss matter of anti-corruption measures in Rīgas satiksme

Failing to reach a consensus on whether or not the matter regarding anti-corruption measures in Rīgas satiksme should be viewed behind closed doors, Riga City Council’s Security, Public Order and Corruption Prevention Committee decided to postpone its review.

Latvian companies in Vietnam to be provided with stable tax payment regime

Latvian businesses working in Vietnam are to be provided with a stable tax-payment regime that will not be subject to amendments of Vietnam’s regulations.

Saeima conceptually supports law amendments to reduce PIT debt formation

On Thursday, 24 May, Latvia’s Saeima approved in the first reading amendments to the Personal Income Tax Law that were proposed to reduce the possibility of PIT debt after application of differentiated non-taxable minimum or progressive rate on income, explains Saeima press-service.

Minister: unemployment is no longer Latvia’s main challenge

Latvia’s main challenge is no longer unemployment, rather the lack of qualified work force, said Welfare Minister Jānis Reirs at the opening of «Employment in Latvia yesterday, today and tomorrow» conference.

MH17 investigators: plane downed by Russian military unit

Dutch prosecutors, who are investigating the tragic crash of the Malaysian passenger plane that fell down in eastern Ukraine in 2014 taking the lives of 298 people, have stated that it has been downed by a missile released by a unit of the Russian Armed Forces.

Latvian Saeima gives green light to improve anti-doping regulation

On Thursday, 24 May, Latvia’s Saeima supported amendments to the Sports Law that provide for improving anti-doping regulation in the country and improve the autonomy of the anti-doping organization through the establishment of Latvian Anti-Doping Bureau, as confirmed by Saeima’s press-service.

Lithuania to host summit of women political leaders

Lithuania and its President Dalia Grybauskaitė will host the 2018 summit of the forum of Women Political Leaders, which is to take place in Vilnius from June 6 to 8.

Green energy becomes more and more attractive for Latvian residents

As technologies continue developing, the use of green energy gradually becomes more and more attractive to Latvian residents. The majority of respondents note that they may start using biomass, solar batteries and even wind turbines in the next ten years, according to results of Baltic International Bank’s latest Latvian Barometer.

Tartu railway routes operating again, system recovery from fire worth millions

In Estonia, railway traffic around the second city of Tartu interrupted last week by a cable fire has been restored with a temporary solution. To fully restore the automatic system, Estonian Railways estimate, millions of euros could be spent.

Committee chairman: municipalities’ involvement in state re-emigration policy is vital

«It is necessary to establish local governments’ responsibility in the country’s general re-emigration policy, because their role is vital. It is also important to involve the private sector. Re-emigration is not just a responsibility for regional coordinators; it is also a complex venture in which we should divide responsibility,» says chairman of Saeima’s Citizenship Committee Ritvars Jansons.

EC nearly to allocate half of next year’s budget to support economic growth

On Wednesday, 23 May, European Commission initiated approval of European Union’s 2019 budget project for EUR 166 billion, making EU’s next year budget 3% larger.

Yulia Skripal in first filmed statement: «We are very lucky to have survived»

Yulia Skripal, one of the victims of the Salisbury poison attack, has expressed her sentiments in her first filmed statement since the attack that has increased the diplomatic isolation of Russia as it is seen by many countries to have been highly likely linked to the attempted murder of Yulia and Sergei Skripals.

Latvia to refinance debt with lower interest rates

Latvia has released simultaneous two-term euro bonds for a total amount of EUR 650 million on international markets, as confirmed by State Treasury.

Italian head of state accepts Conte's candidacy for post of Prime Minister

In Italy, President Sergio Mattarella has accepted the candidacy of a political novice for the post of the Prime Minister chosen by two parties that seek both to lower taxes and renegotiate Italy's foreign debt.

Riga City Council decides not to view gambling hall closure in Riga; says Saeima should do it

Riga City Council has declined opposition deputy Juris Jurašs’ proposal to review matter regarding the closure of gambling halls in Riga. The coalition and one other deputy abstained in the vote, opposition voted in favour.

Fixed MPC portion to drop 27.8% for electricity users in July

From 1 July onward, the fixed portion of mandatory procurement component will decline by 27.8% for all electricity users, as reported by Public Utilities Commission.

Producer price level in industry grew 0.6% in Latvia in April

Compared to March, level of producer prices in the Latvian industry rose by 0.6 % in April 2018. Prices of products sold on the domestic market went up by 1.0 % and prices of exported products by 0.3 %.

70% of residents confident about benefits from European Union membership

According to results of European Parliament’s Eurobarometer study, 52% of Latvian residents are confident their country’s membership in the European Union is a good thing. An average of 60% of respondents across member states agree with this statement; even more positive responses are noted in Lithuania and Estonia – 67% and 69% respectively, as BNN was informed by EP Office in Latvia.

Minister: merging Competition Council and Public Utilities Commission is possible

Merging Competition Council and Public Utilities Commission is possible and is something for the next government to consider, says Latvian Economic Minister Arvils Ašeradens.

Turkish lira sharply loses value this week

The national currency of Turkey, the lira, has lost five percent of its value against the U.S. dollar this week resulting in a 20%-drop in the currency pair in 2018. The Middle Eastern NATO member is to hold early presidential and parliamentary election in June.

Number of companies whose employees sort waste on a rise in Latvia

The battery-collecting campaign organized by AS Latvijas Zaļais punkts, SIA Officeday Latvia and SIA Fazer Latvia has concluded. Over the course of the eight-month campaign, more than 100 businesses managed to collect 1,104 kg of used batteries.

Estonia's Kaljulaid on visit to Ukraine, where warfare has escalated

Kersti Kaljulaid, the President of Estonia, is in Ukraine on an official visit taking place from May 22 to 24m which includes both meetings with senior officials and travelling to Eastern Ukraine, where the Donbass war has entered its fifth year.

Latvian State Audit: it is necessary to sort out retirement pension system

Latvia should finally sort its sensitive retirement pension system, said State Auditor Elita Krūmiņa in an interview to Rīta Panorāma programme of LTV.