bnn.lv Latviski   bnn-news.com English   bnn-news.ru По-русски
Sunday 22.10.2017 | Name days: Irīda, Īrisa
LithuaniaLithuania

Upcoming Lithuanian PM to put emigration curbing on top of agenda

FaceBook
Twitter
Draugiem
print
(+1 rating, 1 votes)

Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RU

Saulius Skvernelis

Linas Jegelevičius for the BNN

With the signatures of the leaders of the Lithuanian Peasant and Green Union (LVŽS) and the Lithuanian Social Democratic Party (LSDP)  inked on a ruling coalition agreement, both parties look forward to the next week, when Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaitė is expected to submit a candidacy of the country’s new Prime Minister to the new-term legislature.

Few doubt that Saulius Skvernelis, the former Interior minister and the number 1 on the LVŽS electoral list, will take over the reins.

Readying to the stint, Skvernelis has provided some hints this week as to what kind of premiership to expect from him.

«The priorities are already laid out in the draft of the Coalition’s Programme of Action. On top of it are social issues, reduction of social seclusion and economy growth. We aim to see as many as possible inhabitants experiencing it. It’s urgent that peoplestart feeling that they live in a state with an improving economy. The feeling would prevent them from looking at the foreign labour markets,» Skvernelis told Lithuanian media after the signing.

Naglis Puteikis, a Lithuanian MP, believes the goals are «doable.»

«Look, it is the first ruling coalition in many years that has very clearly named the country’s most acute issues. Considering that LVŽS has nearly an absolute majority in the Parliament, pursuing the objectives will be a whole lot easier. The former coalition would not turn ear to my insistent proposal to hike non-taxable income and this one has already enshrined it in its programme. This is a promising start,» the legislator told BNN.

Another urgent task the new Government is determined to address is Lithuania’s record-high emigration. Among the other poignant issues are the fields of education, healthcare and social insurance.

«It is essential to carry out structural changes in our education, healthcare and social care as it would help us address many issues, including emigration and the demographic situation. We strive to create conditions where families want to raise children. For that, a stable social background under the feet is needed,» the future PM emphasised.

Asked what he expects himself from a new Lithuanian government, Skvernelis expressed will that it will be more «determined, robust, modern, honest and more transparent.»

«I really want it to have a clear vision and be able to acquaint all the people with it. That would allow us to strike a dialogue with different social groups and help us implement the vision,» Skvernelis said.

Reminded of the quite rocky relations with the President’s Office as the minister of Interior Affairs, Skvernelis expressed hope that they now will be «constructive» and called previous disagreements with the head-of-state «episodic.»

Skvernelis ended up being in hot waters at the end of last year, when a suspect escaped from a police car with a Kalashnikov rifle and he was not available to the Seimas chairwoman for explanations.

Grybauskaitė has called the situation «deplorable.»

Now, Skvernelis claims all fences with the head-of-state have been mended.

«I really see our dialogue as very good-hearted. I assure all I will hear the President and we will talk a language of arguments. I am very interested in having relations between the Seimas, Government and President’s Office as business-like as possible,» he underscored.

Echoing, LVŽS leader Ramūnas Karbauskis reiterated the key tasks for this coalition would include curbing emigration, solution of demographic problems, reduction of social exclusion and special focus on education.

«Curbing emigration, settlement of the demographic problem, reduction of social exclusion and special focus on education, which will be a priority. Speaking about solutions, there are very many of them, the program is very broad, and the most important thing is that it will be implemented,» Karbauskis said at the signing ceremony.

The outgoing PM, Algirdas Butkevičius, the leader of the Social Democrats, said projects having to do with energy system reforms shall be continued.

«This includes incorporation of gas pipeline links in Eastern and Central European networks, the so-called GIPL project, study of electricity synchronization and the possibility to launch the project, other important energy issues, such as construction of thermal power plants in Vilnius and Kaunas,»  Butkevičius told BNS.

According to the document, the Peasant and Green Union will propose candidates for prime minister and parliamentary speaker, while posts in the Seimas and the government will be distributed in accordance to the number of parliamentary mandates.

The agreement lists the ministries to be headed by each specific party.

In negotiations, the two parties agreed that LVŽS would propose candidates to head 11 ministries, while the Social Democrats will propose candidates for the posts of foreign, justice and economy ministers in the new government.

The coalition agreement also envisages that the partners would decide on values individually, with the possibility of searching other allies in the Seimas.

The document stipulates establishment of an advisory board to coordinate settlement of various issues and include four representatives of each of the two parties.

In the October elections, LVŽS won 56 mandates in Lithuania’s 141-seat parliament, while the Social Democrats secured 17.

Meanwhile, the conservative Homeland Union–Lithuanian Christian Democrats (TS-LKD), the Liberal Movement and the Party of Order and Justice will stay in the opposition and the Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania – Christian Families Alliance (LRA-KŠS) has not made up its mind whether or not to support the new ruling majority in the parliament.

The two biggest opposition parties – the Conservatives and the Liberals – have already said that they will seek to head the Committee on Audit and the Anticorruption Commission and, possibly, the Commission for Ethics and Procedures in the incoming Seimas.

Karbauskis has confirmed that the posts of heads of the Anticorruption Commission and the Commission for Ethics and Procedures, as well as that of a deputy chairperson of the Budget and Finance Committee, will be given to the parliamentary minority.

Gabrielius Landsbergis, the TS-LKD leader, believes that these positions should be given to the Liberals and the Conservatives.

«The true opposition – the Homeland Union and the Liberals – will seek the top positions in the three watchdog panels. Whether we succeed is another question. This is a litmus test for the new government of whether they will only imitate democracy or will truly play by the Western rules,» he said.

Ref: 020/111.111.111.4218


Leave a reply

Professor: by taking money away from science, the state shoots itself in the foot

The matter regarding insufficient funding for science has recently become more topical in the public space. President of Latvian Academy of Sciences Ojārs Spārītis is rather critical of the situation: Latvia has lied to the European Union and European Commission about making sure that funding for science reaches 1.5% of GDP by 2020.

To prevent fraud, audit of MPC recipients to be performed in Latvia

Latvian Economy Ministry intends to perform an audit of mandatory procurement component recipients and use new regulations to combat fraudulent activities, as confirmed by Economy Minister Arvils Ašeradens.

Rail Baltic procurements to be processed using Electronic Procurements System

Following the changes to Latvian Republic’s Public Procurements Law, all new procurements for Rail Baltica administered by RB RAIL will be processed using a free electronic information system and its e-contest subsystem.

Estonian construction price index pushed up by wages

The construction price index in Estonia has in July-September of 2017 increased by 0.9% in comparison to second quarter this year and by 1.7% from July-September of 2016, Estonian statisticians have estimated.

Surplus of Latvia’s government budget reached 9.5 million euros in 2016

In 2016 general government budget surplus accounted for EUR 9.5 million or 0.04 % of the Gross Domestic Product, whereas general government consolidated gross debt amounted to EUR 10 091.6 million or 40.6 % of the GDP.

Latvia to invest EUR 5.9 million into formation of unified port network

Ports of Riga planning region and Kurzeme planning region have commenced an important tourism project. The goal of this project is creating a unified yacht port network in Latvia and Estonia with quality services that would allow developing sailing tourism and attract foreign sailing enthusiasts in the future, reports the regions’ representative Inese Ozoliņa.

Graft-suspected Tartu deputy mayors resign

In Estonia's second largest city, Tartu, Deputy Mayors Artjom Suvorov and Valvo Semilarski have stepped down from office, Estonian press reported, after the politicians were arrested under suspicion of graft.

Expert: workers of Latvia’s NGO sector have high ‘burnout’ risk

Workers of Latvia’s NGO sector have a high burnout risk, said once the director of Providus Dace Akule in an interview to Latvijas Radio.

Producer: many young people come to work in the film industry

Latvia’s film industry has been steadily growing these past several years, and it is especially gratifying that many young people are coming to work in the industry, says director and producer, representative of Film Angels Productions Jānis Kalējs.

Pollution blamed for every sixth premature death globally

Nine million premature deaths globally in 2015 are said to be related to pollution, a study has found pointing to presence of harmful matter in air, water and workplace as the three main risk factors.

Infectologist: influenza kills biologically the weakest, including children and pregnant women

Influenza is an infection that affects both children and adults. However, it kills those who are biologically weak, says Immunization State Council chairperson and infectologist of Children’s Vaccination Centre Dace Zavadska.

Investor activity made easier between Latvia and Vietnam

An intergovernmental agreement has been signed between the Republic of Latvia and Socialist Republic of Vietnam on prevention of double taxation and tax avoidance in relation to income tax.

Colder masses of air to enter Latvia in coming days; precipitation to be limited

Although high atmospheric pressure will be present above Latvia in the coming days, southern regions in Latvia will experience short-term precipitation on Saturday, 12 October, caused by the cyclone active above Poland. Colder masses of air will enter Latvia in the coming days.

Maltese journalist said to be killed by remotely-controlled explosive

Officials in Malta have unveiled it is assumed that investigative journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia was murdered by an explosive places under her car, which was detonated remotely.

Prime Minister: Latvia cannot accept additional asylum seekers

Latvia cannot afford to resettle additional asylum seekers, said Prime Minister Māris Kučinskis during his meeting with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker on Thursday, 19 October.

Scandinavians purchase tourism company in Lithuania; changes expected in Latvia too

Dutch Otravo online travel organization has expanded and has purchased Lithuanian online travel agency Interno Partneris, thereby entering the Baltic market.

Ombudsman: non-citizen status matter should be resolved in next decade

The next ten years may be the transition period to ‘put an end’ to the non-citizen status in Latvia, said ombudsman Juris Jansons in an interview to LTV programme Rīta panorama.

Swedish Foreign Minister: harassment exists at highest political level

The Foreign Affairs Minister of Sweden, Margot Wallström, has commended the current sexual assault and harassment awareness campaign in social media and urged to fellow politicians to address the problem.

Latvenergo recognized as Latvia’s most valuable company for tenth time

Latvenergo has been recognized as Latvia’s most valuable company in 2017. Its value grew 34% in comparison with 2016, according to the TOP 101 list of Latvia’s most valuable companies compiled by Prudentia and Nasdaq Riga.

Number of births and number of deaths decline in Latvia

During the first nine months of this year 15,723 babies were born in Latvia, which is 1,113 children fewer than in the corresponding period of the last year.

CC applies binding conditions for the sale of MTG Broadcasting AB

Latvian Competition Council has decided to permit Bite Lietuva to purchase MTG Broadcasting AB group’s businesses in Latvia. CC has applied several binding conditions to prevent a possible impact on competition on the television services and advertisement market.

Eesti Energia warns: Limiting CO2 emissions on capacity could endanger energy supply

Estonian energy giant Eesti Energia has evaluated that a plan under discussion in the European Union to introduce a carbon dioxide release limit for capacity mechanisms to qualify for subsidies could adversely affect the security of supply in Estonia and the Baltic states.

Solidarity tax norm recognized as non-compliant with Latvia’s Constitution

On Thursday, 19 October, the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Latvia declared the Solidarity tax norm as non-compliant with the country’s Constitution.

Survey: Riga residents go to the doctor’s the most often

34% of residents undergo regular health checks, according to Mana Aptieka & Apotheka health index. In addition, women are twice as serious about health checks as men.

LG cozies up with idea of rebuilding railway tracks to Reņģe, Latvia

Lithuania‘s Lietuvos Geležinkeliai has sent a mixed message as to what it intends to do next following an EC fine of nearly 28 million against it over the dismantling a 19-km railway stretch with the Latvian village of Rengė.