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Sunday 19.11.2017 | Name days: Liza, Līze, Elizabete, Betija

Expert: there are no leaders in EU funding realization among Baltic States

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During the period of 2000-2011, the largest effect of EU investments was noted in Lithuania’s economy. EU investments there formed 1.8% of GDP per period. On top of that, Lithuania’s GDP per capita increased from 40% of the average EU index in 2000 to 66% in 2011.

Estonia attracted the least EU funds in the last 11 years – 1.5% of GDP per period. However, the situation is largely affected by the European Commission’s (EC) to halt payments from structure funds in October 2011 (restored in January 2012). Latvia’s benefit was estimated at 1.6% of GDP. Latvia has the most experience among Baltic States in restoring previously halted payments.

“The main reason why we are behind Lithuania in terms of attracted funds – is the successful use of structural funds from the beginning of the current planning period by our neighbours, while Latvia only began actively using funds of 2007-2013 in 2009. In addition, the funding of rural development programs per capita in Lithuania have been larger than those in Latvia by one-third: i.e., Lithuania’s advantage lies in speed and volume,” – European Funds affairs advisor Baiba Traidase explained.

By the end of 2012, Latvia received 4.3 billion LVL from EU budget and gave pack 1.1 billion LVL in return. “This means that every paid Lat returns four times its amount. If we compare the amounts paid by Baltic States to the EU budget and received from the EU budget in the period from 2000 to 2011, Lithuania stands out as the prime example of putting said money into good use the best. Lithuania returns 4.4 EUR for each 1 EUR it paid to the EU budget, Latvia – 3.7 EUR, Estonia – 3.4 EUR,” – Traidase comments.

“Latvia has been successfully realizing projects in employment, city restoration, rural development and fishery. We fall behind Lithuania and Estonia in terms of realization of money provided by the European Fund for Regional Development and Cohesion Fund,” – she noted.

“There is no absolute leader among Baltic States in terms of realization of finances provided by EU funds. Estonia has more luck with EC programs, Lithuania is experiencing a positive effect of EU investment funds, while Latvia constantly reminds everyone about its existence by demonstrating some slight progress in the realization of EU funds. Negotiations of EU leaders about the budget for 2014-2020 concluded on February 8. Latvia is behind Estonia and Lithuania in terms of available support per capita. However, Latvia was among the countries like Malta and Bulgaria, struggling to improve the offers of the EU budget (negotiations were successful – EU to provide additional 67 million EUR). This is why whenever it seems someone’s muscles are larger, Latvia has all the reason to demonstrate its own,” – the expert concluded.

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