Latviski English По-русски
Saturday 22.10.2016 | Name days: Irīda, Īrisa

What needs to be done in getting Lithuanian expats back home?

(No Ratings Yet)


Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RULinas Jegelevičius for BNN


What could bring thousands of Lithuanian expats back to the homeland?

This week, Vilmorus, the polling company, has announced results of a survey that clearly pointed out to two key things: economic growth and a change in the country’s psychological climate are vital to see the emigrants contemplate a possible comeback.

Economic growth and respect matter most


As many as 36 percent of the respondents, scattered all over, replied Lithuania’s economic growth is the key factor in ever making up their mind to pack up and hop onto a Lithuania-bound plane.

The runner-up factor on the wish-list, quite unexpectedly to many, turned out to be the psychological climate in the country and, especially, the level of respect to each.

Behind the two «desirables» sit the will to earn in Lithuania more than in the country of immigration. Perhaps a signal to all Lithuanian employers, this is followed by a «different approach» to the worker in Lithuania -22 percent deemed it important.

Next in the line is «belief» that personal efforts can ever pan out in Lithuania, as well as the striving to see better conditions for establishment a new business in Lithuania.

Eleven percent pointed out they would perhaps return to Lithuania if it provided career better opportunities in private and public sector. A considerable 10 percent discerned «a change» in the social security system.

An impressive 40 percent of the polled expats also singled out the negative public opinion towards them by the fellow compatriots in Lithuania. Meanwhile, 54 percent told the pollster they have never encountered an adverse reaction just because they live and work.


Foreign Ministry to hone future campaigns targeting expats


Interestingly, 89 percent of the surveyed said they are following life in Lithuania through conventional media and, increasingly, via social media, but were missing positive information about Lithuania and the career opportunities it can offer.

«Knowing that more expats get information about Lithuania through social media will allow us accordingly carry out and coordinate our future campaigns,» says Mantvydas Bekešius, the deputy minister of the Lithuanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Notably, 30 percent intended to never come back to Lithuania, Bekešius insists «the number is not big.»

«To translate it, it means that two-thirds of Lithuanians do to not see any hurdles for their comeback,» the vice-minister told at the introduction of the survey results.

Asked to weigh in on the popularity of Lithuania in the country of immigration, nearly three out of four respondents said it is «sufficient» or «good», but, notably, 28 percent insisted it was «bad.»

To the question how they have contributed to “positive changes” in Lithuania, which was observed by a whopping majority in the poll, 44 percent told they «popularized» Lithuania in the country where they stay and, interestingly, 43 percent underlined they were «constantly» supporting relatives back home.


Expats tend to be snappish


Summing up the poll results, Vladas Gaidys told BNN that, for many, particularly the Lithuanian public’s take on expats has been «a determining factor» in forging or keeping up the liaisons with Lithuania.

This does not surprise the pollster.

«For some Lithuanians (out there), it seems that many in Lithuania squint at them, in a sense they are being looked down upon. Obviously, part of the expats experiences a certain complex of inferiority and are very sensitive as far as the public opinion about them is concerned,» Gaidys pointed out.

Not surprisingly, therefore, every public discussion online, which affects emigrants, is disproportionally blown up and tend to reverberate long.

«Sometimes, just a single word that does not mean anything special in Lithuania can trigger certain and far-reaching emotional flare-ups,» the Vilmorus director underlined.

As a rule, most of the emigrants are viewed better by the population in a foreign country than in Lithuania, says the survey, ordered by the Lithuanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

And who is to blame for that?

Media, according to the poll.


Lithuania needs to walk step-in-step

Vytis Čiubrinskas, professor and head of Social Anthropology Center and Kaunas Vytautas Magnum University, points out to the factor of intolerance in Lithuania that the majority of the expats have mentioned.

«We see it in our media, especially recently, against the refugees (that Lithuania has committed to accommodate). Indeed, there’s little tolerance for being different in Lithuania,» the scholar concluded.

Meanwhile, following the poll, some of the expats went public, posting their thoughts on the issue online.

«Emigration is not only the choice of the people who departed. It is also the inability of Lithuania to get adapted to the rapidly changing world. The abundance of unfounded phobias and lack of tolerance, pretty much closed and infantile society also are among the main reasons spurring the emigration. It is a paradox: I am not missing Lithuanians, but I do miss Lithuania and its wonderful nature,” says a post by Aleksandras Zelenskis. He adds: «Lithuanians will have long and tediously grow before it gets matured. Lithuania will disappear from the world if it fails to walk step-to-step with the time.»


New trends are good

Approached by BNN, Mantvydas Bekešius, the deputy Foreign Minister, said that while some of the trends have remained –the survey has been conducted for the third time- some of the new trends are «heartening and encouraging.»

«For example, compared to the previous survey, the number of those expats believing that the conditions to cherish Lithuanian nationality bettered recently has risen from 80 to 87 percent. It was very heartening to hear that 90 percent of Lithuanians would like to deal with Lithuanian institutions in the countries of their current stay. That’s a lot and it means that the people want to foster their roots. Slightly over 60 percent of the respondents pointed out they have schooled their children, or still do it, in Lithuanian schools abroad. It marks an insignificant increase from the last survey and brings hope that Lithuanians over the border do care about their origin, language and culture,» Bekešius summed up.

Leave a reply

Four teachers in Latvia are paid wages that exceed EUR 2,000

In September 2016, the biggest teacher’s salary paid in Latvia with bonuses was EUR 2,260.27, as LETA was informed by Education and Science Ministry.

Producer price level down 1.6% in Latvia’s industry

Compared to August, the level of producer prices in Latvian industry increased by 0.3% in September 2016.

SRS Tax Debt Enforcement Office director Cerneckis steps down

On Friday, 21 October, director of Latvian State Revenue Service’s Tax Debt Enforcement Office Kaspars Cerneckis submitted his resignation.

Bookmakers predict Sadurskis’ remainder in his post for the rest of the year

Latvian Education Minister Karlis Sadurskis has been forced to distance himself from political opponents and teacher trade unions because of criticisms regarding reduced wages caused by the teachers’ pay reform. Nevertheless, political support will keep the minister in his post, bookmakers believe.

Lithuanian military discussing deployment of long-range missiles

A senior Lithuanian military officer has on October 20 stated that Lithuania is considering the deployment of long-range missiles in the country in the framework of hosting a multinational NATO battalion in 2017.

Ukraine in joint declaration with Lithuania, Poland condemns WWII aggressors

The Vekhovna Rada of Ukraine has this week adopted a joint declaration with Lithuania and Poland attaching responsibility for World War II to Germany, the USSR and the international community’s «appeasement policy».

Saeima Budget Committee conceptually approves 2017 budget project

On Thursday, 20 October, Saeima’s Budget and Finance Committee supported the state budget project for 2017, the medium-term budget contents for 2017, 2018 and 2019 and 57 legal drafts associated with the project.

Facebook sorry for removing breast cancer informative video

Facbook has expressed apologies for the removal of a breast cancer informative video shared on the social network by a Swedish foundation.

Two of the last twenty three first refugees have left Latvia

The last two of the first twenty three refugees resettled in Latvia have left for Germany, as reported by LTV.

Pregnant woman in Italy dies after doctor allegedly refused to perform abortion

Police in predominantly Catholic Italy is investigating a case of a woman pregnant with twins dying after miscarriage.

Russia applies discount on transit from Belarus

Russian Railways has applied a 25% discount on petrol, diesel fuel and crude cargo transports from oil processing plants in Belarus to Russia’s north-west ports. With that, Russia has basically provided Belarus with tariffs equal to tariffs in Baltics.

The first container train headed for Riga departs from China

On Thursday, 20 October, Latvian Transport Minister Uldis Augulis, representatives from LDz and YXE International Container Train, multiple Chinese officials and Latvia’s ambassador in China Maris Selga saw off the first test container train from China to Riga.

Customs officials intercept hashish shipment worth EUR 2 million

Latvian State Revenue Service’s Customs Police intercepted and confiscated a shipment of more than 200 kg of hashish worth EUR 2 million, as journalists were informed by SRS Customs Police Director Kaspars Podins on Thursday, 20 October.

SA: Riga Freeport has only realized one of five of our recommendations

Latvian State Audit follows the development of the largest investment projects especially carefully, because the state does not seem to handle them all that well. Krievu Island project is one of the largest investment projects, because there is European Union finances invested in it...

Job seekers in Lithuania want Western salaries, employers dumbstruck

Although Lithuanian labour market is in desperate for workforce, but those willing to toil will nod to a job offer only if the pay is really big. So big that the country‘s hirers feel like grabbing their heads upon hearing the candidates‘ salary expectations.

Overall government budget decreased in 2015

In 2015, the general government budget deficit amounted to EUR 309.0 million or 1.3% of the gross domestic product, whereas the general government consolidated gross debt amounted to EUR 8 846.3 million or 36.3% of the GDP.

SP: claims about Motorola’s murderer are an attempt to show Latvia as the enemy

Latvian Security Police views claims that Donetsk military commander Arseny Pavlov, aka Motorola, was allegedly killed by a hired killer from Latvia named Marks Ozolins is nothing more than yet another attempt at information war aimed to demonstrate Latvia and its citizens and enemies.

Estonian President Kaljulaid not to ask state to pay rent

Estonia’s new President Kersti Kaljulaid will not ask the state to pay rent for using her home unlike the former head of state Toomas Hendrik Ilves did.

Every third coin with Milda’s image has made its way to Europe

Every third euro coin with Milda’s image has found its way to Europe. The proportion of those coins in Latvia is 71% of all euro coins in circulation, according to monitoring data compiled by Citadele Bank’s CBL Cash Logistics service.

Estonia plans to increase female proportion in military

Estonia has announced plans to triple female involvement in the country’s Defence Forces and to expand the list of units accessible to woman soldiers by 2018.

Pre-paid mobile card users to be registered as part of a plan to reduce grey economy

At the meeting of state secretaries on 20 October, a proposal was presented from the transport ministry to begin registration of mobile pre-paid card users.

Next year’s budget plan and other decisions viewed by Saeima this week

On Thursday, 20 October, the Saeima will gather for an extraordinary meeting, during which deputies will discuss the next year’s budget plan and 57 associated legal drafts.

European Space Agency attempts to re-connect to its Mars probe

The European Space Agency has lost contact with its Mars probe on October 19 shortly prior to its planned landing on the planet.

Klauss withdraws from SRS personnel selection process

Kristaps Klauss, executive directors of Latvian Forest Industry Federation, has decided to withdraw from State Revenue Service’s personnel selection process.

Lembergs to continue testifying in court at the end of October

Aivars Lembergs, who is accused of serious crimes, will continue testifying in his own criminal case on 31 October, as confirmed by Riga Regional Court’s press-secretary Raimonds Locmelis.