Latviski English По-русски
Friday 18.08.2017 | Name days: Liene, Helēna, Elena, Ellena, Liena

Lithuanian-Russian milk war may come to Latvia

(No Ratings Yet)

Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUMonday, October 7 could mark the beginning of milk war between Lithuania and Russia. Moscow’s Food and Veterinary Service has been blaming Lithuania for all sort of violations since August 2013, but actual threats to cease the supply of milk to Russia have been voiced only recently.

This situation may also affect Latvia as well, Nekā personīga (Nothing personal) programme of TV3 reports.

Lithuania has conflicts with Russia on several fronts. Lithuania has presidency over the EU at the moment. Brussels still hopes to sign the Eastern Partnership Treaty during the Vilnius Summit. This document will ease trade relations with Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine. This plan does not comply with Russian President Vladimir Putin’s plan – restore Russia’s influence over former Soviet territories and create the Eurasian Union.

This conflict is tied to the gas conflict – recently the European Commission had announced its readiness to sue Gazprom for its unfair price policy. This was stated by the Commissioner of Competition who was in Vilnius this week. The EC presented accusations against Gazprom largely thanks to Lithuania. In the meantime, Gazprom’s unfair policy is being investigation by Lithuania’s competition council. Lithuania is also busy building its LNG terminal.

Several countries of the Eastern Partnership Treaty have suffered from Russia’s anger in the last couple of months – Russia is boycotting Moldova’s wines, Ukraine’s chocolates, Lithuania’s bovine meat. All decisions are in the hands of one man – Russia’s state Food and Veterinary Service head Gennady Onischenko.

“Onischenko often come up with announcements regarding some sanctions after Kremlin decides to boycott some country. This was Russia’s way of punishing Moldova for their announcement of plans to sign the treaty with EU,” – researcher of Eastern European Policy Centre Rinalds Gulbis says.

Russia’s sanitary service’s announcements in relation to Lithuania have been largely varied: first there was an announcement that bacterial infection was found in Lithuanian dairy product; then it was announced that the contents do not comply with tags; Russia accused Lithuania of using milk powder. The most recent announcement – there are dangerous antibiotics in those products. Lithuania has yet to receive any official criticism of its products. Lithuania’s food service director has read about Russia’s accusations only in the media.

“We only find out about such things from the press. We have not received any official documents or warnings. I cannot say for sure what we are prohibited or if someone wants to prohibit anything at all,” – says Lithuania’s Food Service manager Jonias Miļius.

If Lithuania ceases to supply Russia with milk, this could affect Latvia as well. Latvian farmers sell 700 tons of milk to Lithuania every day. This is 20% of Latvia’s dairy market. Milk procurement prices will like grow following a slump in demand for milk.

The second important factor to consider for Latvia and Lithuania is problems along the border. This September, Russian border guard have been thoroughly inspecting freight from Lithuania. This also adversely affects Latvia.

Finance Minister Andris Vilks says Latvia’s relations with Russia are much better than those of Lithuania with Russia. Because of this, he believes, a full border blockade is impossible. Latvia’s Transport Minister is not so optimistic.

“We’ve had similar problems a couple of years ago. Back then problems were related to border crossing. We are carefully following all development s to make sure all rules are being followed,” – says Transport minister Anrijs Matīss.


Leave a reply

Kirsis asks police to assess possible forging of votes at Riga City Council

Riga City Council’s Unity faction chairman Vilnis Kirsis has asked State Police to check if the city council’s electronic voting system was used without another deputy’s knowledge or consent, said the politician.

Expert: attack in Spain shows how terrorists switched to more easily reachable targets

Terrorist attacks that transpired in Spain this week shows how terrorists have switched to more easily reachable targets, where security requirements are not as strict, says Latvian National Defence Academy’s Security and Strategic Research Centre researcher Martins Hirss.

New mandatory tests in schools to be introduced four years from now

In four years’ time – 2021/2022 school year – it is planned to introduce completely new mandatory tests in schools, as reported by State Education Content Centre Director Guntars Catlaks.

Nearly 9,000 children and their parents got homes thanks to state support programme

In the first half-year of 2017, state support helped 1,527 families in Latvia to buy homes. Compared with last year, families’ demand for state support has grown 6%, as reported by Altum finance institute.

Prediction: Aseradens will likely take control over Unity

Economy Minister Arvils Aseradens will become the head of Unity, Betsafe bookmakers predict. The possibility of Aseradens becoming the head of the party is given 45% probability by Betsafe.

Provisional estimate for next year’s fiscal space in Latvia is EUR 60 million

Next year’s fiscal space has been estimated at EUR 60 million, as noted by Finance Minister Dana Reizniece-Ozola, adding that a more precise estimate will be available at the end of August.

Reconstruction of Vilnius airport runway concludes; aircraft return to Vilnius

On Thursday, 17 August, Vilnius airport’s runway was festively opened. This was the most massive reconstruction for the airport in the past 20 years. It was a unique project for Lithuania and all of Europe, airport representatives say.

Islamic State terrorist group takes responsibility for Barcelona attack

The recent terrorist attack in Barcelona, in which a shuttle bus rammed a crowd of people on La Rambla, killing 13 and injuring at least 100, has become this week’s topic.

Weather in Latvia to be warm but rainy on weekends

The sun will appear every now and then between clouds on Friday, 18 August. Still, some rain is expected, especially in the afternoon in Latvia’s eastern regions, where thunderstorms may appear. Rain is expected to reach the capital in the afternoon. Wind will draw in from the south. Air temperature will reach +21° C… +26° C, according to State Environment, Geology and Meteorology Centre.

Latvia’s export growth was moderately rapid in the first six months of 2017

Compared with the same period of 2016, Latvia experienced a moderately rapid export growth in the first six months of 2017, according to data published by Eurostat on Thursday, 17 August.

Latvia’s annual inflation in July was one of the highest in Europe

Inflation indexes in Latvia and the UK both reached 2.6% in July, which is one of the highest indexes in the European Union, according to data published by Eurostat on Thursday, 17 August.

Kirsis withdraws his candidacy in favour of Aseradens

Riga City Council member Vilnis Kirsis has decided to withdraw his candidacy from the race to become chairman of Unity in favour of a different candidate – Economy Minister Arvils Aseradens.

Rinkevics expresses Latvia’s interest in maintaining political consultations with Palestine

On Thursday, 17 August, Latvia’s Foreign Affairs Minister Edgars Rinkevics met with the leader of Palestine’s diplomatic mission in Latvia, ambassador Taissir Al Adjouri, to discuss mutual relations between Latvia and Palestine and the peace process in the Middle East.

Putin grins to the world’s seven billionth baby, Lithuania wary of border incidents

Russian President Vladimir Putin paid a visit this Wednesday to Kaliningrad, the westernmost point of Russia, but the reports about his trip in the Russian enclave and over the border in Lithuania were strikingly different.

Survey: red considered the safest colour for a car

Most Latvian drivers consider red to be the safest colour for a car. The most popular, however, is black, according to results of a survey by Virši-A fuel trader.

airBaltic’s number of carried passengers reaches a record in second consecutive month

Latvian airBaltic airline carried 393,312 passengers in July 2017, which is 21% more than the same period last year. The number of passengers carried by airBaltic remains the highest it has ever been in the airline’s history, BNN was informed by the company.

Brivais vilnis: nearly all fish processing companies are experiencing losses

Currently nearly all fish processing companies in Latvia are experiencing major or minor losses, says Brivais vilnis chairman Arnols Babris.

American helicopters to perform low-altitude flights within Latvia’s airspace

U.S. Air Force Brigade’s Task Force Phoenix helicopters, which are stationed in Latvia as part of Atlantic Resolve operation, will be performing low-altitude flights from 16:00 to 18:00 from Lielvarde to Dobele on Friday, 18 August.

Healthcare Ministry’s state secretary Karlis Ketners may be replaced

Latvian Healthcare Ministry may replace its state secretary Karlis Ketners. It is possible he will be transferred to work at Finance Ministry, as reported by LTV.

Suspects in Europe's insecticide egg scandal before Dutch court

In the Netherlands, two men have been in court in relation to the scandal of eggs containing banned insecticide that has caused an EU-wide health scare and cost millions of euros of damages.

Indian national with fake documents apprehended on Latvian border

An Indian citizen travelling from Moscow on a bus was caught at Terehovo border control point in Latvia for presenting officers a fake EU family member’s resident card. No criminal process was launched. The person returned to the country he was travelling from.

Latvijas dzelzceļš will not have to pay dividends from last year’s profits

The government decided on Wednesday, 16 August, that Latvijas dzelzceļš will not have to pay dividends from last year’s profits, which were EUR 880,998.

Latvian citizenship provided to 103 people

The Cabinet of Ministers has issued an order to provide Latvian citizenship to 103 people through naturalization.

Estonian Inbank's profits reach EUR 5.7 million in six months

Estonian financial services' provided Inbank made a profit of 5.7 million euros in the first half of 2017, which is a 429.4% increase compared to the respective period in 2016.

Agriculture Ministry invites residents to sign up for measures to support fisheries

From 21 August onward, Rural Support Service plans to start accepting applications for projects to receive support from European Maritime and Fisheries Fund’s action plan for development of fisheries in 2014-2020 as part of projects Innovation, Productive Investments in Aquaculture and Fishing and Aquaculture project processing.