bnn.lv Latviski   bnn-news.com English   bnn-news.ru По-русски
Tuesday 19.06.2018 | Name days: Nils, Viktors
LatviaLatvia

Vilks: Unity is starting to resemble UGF

FaceBook
Twitter
Draugiem
print
(No Ratings Yet)

Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUAccording to former Finance Minister Andris Vilks, the largest party in the coalition, Unity, is changing: its strongest politicians are ‘either in Brussels or underground’ and the party’s ideology is crumbling, as reported by lsm.lv.

Unity «is no longer the party I had once joined. It’s starting to resemble something like the Union of Greens and Farmers: the ideology is crumbling in attempts to maintain fiscal discipline and we see a rise in populism», said Vilks in his interview to Rīta Panorāma programme of LTV.

He added that most of Unity’s strongest politicians are either in Brussels or chased underground. Those that remain have no choice but ‘to accept or refuse the rules of the game’.

Vilks also said that Valdis Dombrovskis’ government had collapsed because Unity was against letting UGF join the coalition for too long.

«I am worried that we may be changing our political ideology,» – said Vilks, warning about the growing populism and risks for fiscal discipline. He admits that Finance Ministry can oppose populism for a long time. Nevertheless, it puts at risk everything Latvia has accomplished up until now by reducing budget deficit.

As it is known, ministries and state institutions have compiled and submitted their newest political initiatives to the Finance Ministry for the next year’s budget worth approximately EUR 547 million. Requests for the 2017 budget reach nearly EYR 782 million and those of 2018 – EUR 1.15 billion.

In accordance with estimates of Fiscal Discipline Council, the government will have to secure consolidation worth nearly EUR 114 million when preparing the 2016 budget.

As it is known, Vilks had previously said that the ‘system’ had basically forced then the Prime Minister Valdis Dombrovskis to leave and take responsibility for the terrible tragedy in Zolitude.

«The main reason was to get UGF in the government. The crisis ended sooner than expected and we were able to exit recession much quicker. On top of that, [Aivars] Lembergs’ large influence in Latvia’s politics meant that UGF could no longer remain in the opposition. That was the main reason,» – said Vilks in his interview to Ir magazine.

He believes the people behind Dombrovskis resignation are in the government coalition. «UGF needed to enter the government with its work and ministries when the economy was in a state of growth and when the elections were close by. I believe it was disrespectful toward the person who has done so much for Latvia,» – added Vilks, who decided to exit politics shortly after Dombrovskis resignation.

BNN had previously reported that the Zolitude tragedy was likely used by Aivars Lembergs to ensure political advantage. On November 21, the roof of Maxima supermarket collapsed onto its customers and on November 22 the sitting of Ventspils City Council lacked three key figures – Lembergs and two deputy-chairmen of the Council Jānis Vītoliņš and Guntis Blumbergs – as if gone to Rīga.

Unofficial information of the BNN indicates that Lembergs, taking advantage of the tragic accident, had decided to bring down the government in order to involve the Union of Greens and Framers (UGF) in the next cabinet. It is said that he has taken part in consultations with representatives of the Office of State President Andris Bērziņš, possibly, with head of President’s Chancery Gundars Daudze and head of state himself.

This means that the reason why Bērziņš used harsh language to describe the Zolitūde tragedy as a mass murder is likely to have been a plan to provide ground for further steps of ousting the government and not concern over disorder in the construction industry.

Perhaps, if Bērziņš would really wish to put the state in order, he would also ask accused persons and persons standing before trial to leave public office until court judgement has been pronounced.

On Wednesday, November 27, the meeting between the President and the Prime Minister, after which the latter announced his resignation from office, lasted for an hour and a half and it can be perceived it was the head of state who called on the Prime Minister to assume political responsibility for the tragedy. «Everyone, who has been involved in taking all the crucial decisions, should evaluate his or her political and moral responsibility and should decide how to act further,» the President said, perhaps forgetting himself in this aspect.

Members of his party, together with Lembergs’ «For Latvia and Ventspils» party, were in 2009 among the legislators who voted for the dissolution of the State Building Inspection that is currently pointed out as the reason why the cabinet should have resigned.

«Prime Minister Valdis Dombrovskis and President Andris Bērziņš enter the press room. Resentment cannot be hidden in the PM’s face. The tone of voice and the actual text of the announcement acknowledge this. It seems the words do not come from Dombrovskis himself, he only voices them. «Taking into account the Zolitūde tragedy and all its aspects, a government is needed that has the support of the Saeima majority and that is capable of solving the situation, which has developed in the country,» says the Prime Minister who had insisted in a recent television interview «someone should work as well.»» Such description of the event following the meeting was provided by the daily «Latvijas avīze».

Finally, it must be explained how come it is so easy for Lembergs to control State President Andris Bērziņš almost as a puppet to serve his whims. When Bērziņš, being a member of the 10th Saeima, was elected the state president, rumour had it that this had happened with the support of Lembergs. Bērziņš himself said at the time that before running for the office he had discussed this issue with Lembergs. The latter, some say, also influenced Bērziņš’ stepping down from the leadership of the bank Latvijas Unibanka (currently under the name of SEB).

Ref: 102.109.109.5782


Leave a reply

Latvian coalition still torn about attracting highly-qualified guest workers

Because of differences in opinions among ministries, Latvia’s government is unlikely to support and view the proposal to ease the issue of EU blue card to highly-qualified guest workers without appropriate higher education, says Prime Minister Māris Kučinskis.

Corruption watchdog requests criminal prosecution of Bank of Latvia head

Latvia’s Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau has sent materials of a criminal case to the prosecutor’s office with a request to commence criminal prosecution of Bank of Latvia governor Ilmārs Rimšēvičs and businessman Māris Martinsons.

Riga City Council votes to add Vidzeme market to Riga Central Market’s capital

Riga City Council’s City Property Development Committee has voted in favour of adding Vidzeme Market to AS Riga Central Market’s capital. Opposition members voted against this during the meeting.

Police dismantle criminal group specialising in storage and transportation of excise goods

Officers of Latvia’s State Revenue Service discovered a suspicious shipment during a routine inspection of a vehicle at Riga Passenger Port. With help from State Police, officers found more than 2.3 million illegal cigarettes and 960 litres of spirit, as confirmed by police.

airBaltic receives its ninth Bombardier CS300 aircraft

On 17 June, Latvia’s airBaltic airline received its ninth Bombardier CS300 aircraft. The airline plans to expand its existing aircraft fleet with 14 CS300 aircraft before the end of the year.

Employment agency invites employers to apply for new job support programme

Employers will be able to apply for participation in a programme of the European Social Fund to help create subsidized jobs for unemployed people. Eighteen offices of Latvia’s State Employment Agency will be offering registration until 27 June.

Programme: government continues working on MPC plan’s cancellation

The disproportionate mandatory procurement component costs have become one of the biggest political scandals in Latvia since autumn last year. Attempts to put an end to the MPC system are continuing alongside the search of those responsible for the dysfunctional system. The government’s work group say it is impossible to completely cancel the system, as reported by Nekā Personīga programme.

De Facto: ABLV Bank’s self-liquidation – controlled or not so much?

«Controlled self-liquidation» – this is the undefined procedure Finance and Capital Market Commission has picked for ABLV Bank. This decision came after three months of document assessment, discussions with politicians and active media campaigns, as noted by De Facto journalists.

Latvia police investigate link between murdered insolvency administrator and missing businessman

Latvia’s State Police have begun an investigation of a possible link between the murdered insolvency administrator Mārtiņš Bunkus and the missing businessman Andris Bojārs, as confirmed by police representative Ilze Jurēvica.

Hundreds of migrants rejected in Italy allowed to leave ships in Spain

Migrants taken on rescue ships in the Mediterranean Sea and turned away by Italy and Malta have arrived in Spain's port of Valencia as three ships arrived in the harbour, including the Aquarius, which rescued the 630 migrants the week before.

Monday expected to be exceptionally hot in Latvia

Cool masses of air will flow into Latvia at the beginning of the week. Wind speed will increase as well. Several rain-cloud zones will pass through the country. Monday is expected to be the hottest day of this week in Latvia, as air temperature will likely reach +23° C… +26° C in most of the country. South-east regions of Latvia may even experience air temperature of +29° C.

Week in Lithuania. Lithuanian Railways joins European train system Interrail

Lithuanian state railway company Lietuvos Geležinkeliai has joined Interrail, a European train system that allows passengers to buy cheaper tickets for train travel across Europe.

Zolitūde tragedy lawyer criticises Latvian laws as favourable to insolvency administrators, not business owners

Outspoken Latvian lawyer, Aldis Gobzems, who defends in civil trials the victims of the Zolitūde supermarket collapse, where 54 people died and dozens suffered injuries, has joined the KPV LV party for the parliamentary election and is pointing to perceived political support to a few successful insolvency administrators.

Eurozone simulation with monthly billions to be quit in 2018

The European Central Bank has stated it would quit end its massive programme to stimulate the eurozone economy by buying bonds for 30 billion euros each month in December.

Human traffickers in Hungary sent to prison for 71 people dead in meat truck

For the deaths of 71 migrants, who suffocated in a sealed meat truck in Hungary in August 2015, a Hungarian court has sentenced four men to 25-year jail terms after finding them guilty of people-smuggling.

Lithuanian employers bristle against minimum wage raise to 450 euro

The disparities of the socio-economic development of the regions are very high in Lithuania, so raising the minimum wage from 400 euros now to 450 euros as suggested by the Lithuanian Government would cripple many small and medium-sized business owners in the less prosperous regions and the municipalities, Lithuanian economists caution. The minimum wage was raised in Lithuania by 20 per cent to 400 euros last year.

No-confidence vote on Latvian Justice Minister postponed to June 20

In the Latvian parliament, two motions asking for the resignation of Latvian Justice Minister Dzintars Rasnačs have been submitted and the vote is expected to take place on June 20.

Judge urges to stop testing politicians for cooperation with Soviet KGB

As Latvian politicians running in elections have to acknowledge that they have not worked for the Soviet State Security Committee during the Soviet occupation of the country, courts have since 1995 been looking into cases of possible cooperation and now, due to the lack of evidence, politicians should drop the evaluation of possible cooperation with the KGB, suggested a judge at the Riga Regional Court.

State budget income up 11% in Latvia this year

In the Latvian state budget, a total of 3.8 billion euros have been paid in the first five months of 2018, which is by 11% more than in the respective period last year, the Latvian State Revenue Service stated.

Volkswagen fined billion euros for diesel exhaust scheme

German car maker Volkswagen has been fined one billion euros by German prosecutors for its diesel emissions scandal and the car firm's management has stated it did not plan to appeal against the fine.

U.S.: Sanctions against North Korea to remain until complete denuclearisation

The U.S. has warned North Korea that it would not see any economic sanctions lifted until it has demonstrated «complete denuclearisation», according to U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

Popular restaurant chain denies alleged tampering with cash registers

Criminal police in Latvia has conducted searches at the popular Riga restaurant chain Vairāk Saules on suspicion of alleged tampering with its cash registers.

Pigs in first swine fever-hit farm culled

As to the first case of domestic pigs in Latvia being infected with the African swine fever virus in 2018, Latvian veterinary authorities have culled 165 pigs in the affected farm in central Latvia.

Bank of Latvia head appeals against decision to remove his access to state secrets

The Bank of Latvia President, Ilmārs Rimšēvičs, who is suspected of accepting a bribe, has appealed to the Prosecutor General, Ēriks Kalnmeiers, against the decision by the Latvian Constitution Protection Bureau to remove his permit to access state secrets.

Charging electric car to cost 15 cents per minute in Latvia

As Latvia builds its network of 150 quick charging stations for electric vehicles, the Latvian government has approved the cost of the service at 15 euro cents per minute with the value added tax.

Have you been offered a bribe for particular choice in election?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

Polls Archive



Category feed: Feed: