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Week in Lithuania. Healthcare minister admits giving bribe to doctor, President is unhappy

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Lithuania’s Healthcare Minister Rimantė Šalaševičiūtė


Lithuania’s Healthcare Minister Rimantė Šalaševičiūtė has confessed in a radio interview to have given a bribe to doctors in the past. She admitted she had done being asked by a relative awaiting surgery
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The family member thought that it will be more successful if the surgeon’s «palm is greased». The Minister made the revelation while discussing small-scale corruption that is wide-spread in the country’s healthcare system. Lithuanian President urged STT, Lithuania’s special service, to launch an investigation into the minister’s revelation.

Bank of Lithuania: resident payment habits changing

For purchases and services, residents tend to pay in cash less frequently; the amount spent in cash has also decreased, announced Bank of Lithuania. In addition, the number of residents having payment cards grew; a large share of them, however, are still not using a payment card for daily settlements, shows a survey of residents conducted on behalf of the Bank of Lithuania.

In 2015, the number of Lithuanian residents who have a payment card was growing, and, despite the fact that the majority of residents having payment cards still do not have a habit of consistently using them at distribution and service provision locations.

Klaipėdos Nafta loading longest tanker in its history

Almost 281 m in length tanker Hrvatska has moored at the second berth of SC Klaipėdos Nafta. In company’s history this is the longest tanker. So far, the longest tanker ever moored at SC Klaipedos Nafta berths was HS Alcina with the length of 275 meters. She entered Klaipėda port in 2014.The tanker Hrvatska is sailing with the Croatian flag. Her full length is 280.89 m. The ship is able to transport 166 thousand tons of oil products. In December last year, SC Klaipėdos Nafta’s cargo handling grew by almost 9 percent and throughout 2015 annual cargo turnover increased by more than 15 percent. Such results were mainly caused by company’s new transhipment contracts and oil producers’ favourable global margins.

Defence Minister: Lithuania could become logistics hub for US military

Lithuania could become a regional logistics centre for the US military, believes Lithuania’s Defence Minister Juozas Olekas. This was voiced Thursday, January 28, during the meeting of the minister and Principal Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics of the United States Alan F. Estevez. They discussed the host nation support and infrastructure Lithuania provides for allied forces deployed here at a meeting in Lithuania.

Foreign Affairs Ministry marked International Holocaust Remembrance Day

On Wednesday, January 27, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs organised a presentation of the Vilna Gaon State Jewish Museum’s two travelling exhibitions -«Lithuanian Jews behind the Iron Curtain» and the «The Vilna Ghetto Posters».The Vice-Minister Mantvydas Bekešius opened the exhibitions and thanked the Vilna Gaon State Jewish Museum for cooperation and efforts to increase the public interest in the Holocaust, the Lithuanian Jewish culture and traditions.

The Vilna Gaon State Jewish Museum’s curators – Aušra Rožankevičiūtė and Neringa Latvytė-Gustaitienė – presented the exhibitions. Later, Vice-Minister Bekešius also visited the Choral Synagogue of Vilnius, where he took part in a commemorative event and read names of the victims of the Holocaust together with members of the Jewish Community of Lithuania

Maltese man fights extradition to Lithuania

A man apprehended in Malta on Lithuania-issued arrest warrant is fighting extradition, arguing that conditions in Lithuanian prisons are inhumane and humiliate his dignity. The Court of Appeals of Malta on Tuesday, January 26, heard arguments for and against the reversal of an extradition judgement against Maltese-Australian Angelo Spiteri, the Malta Independent reported.

Lithuania earmarks 20,000 euro to refugees in Turkey

Lithuania’sMinistry of Foreign Affairs announced Thursday, February 28, it had earmarked 20,000 euro in humanitarian aid to refugees in Turkey. The funds will be transferred via the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Office (UNHCR). Lithuania has committed to accept 1105 refugees, but the process has stalled. Lithuania also continues its support to the victims of the conflict in Syria which was launched in 2014 when 48,700 euro was allocated and in 2015 – 90,000 euro for humanitarian assistance.

Credit company fined for giving quick loans to unemployed

Lithuanian banking regulators have slammed a consumer credit company with a penalty of 30,000 euro for issuing loans to jobless applicants. It is the biggest fine of this kind to date.

Omnitel wins Lithuania’s radio frequencies auction

Mobile operator Omnitel has won the auction of radio frequencies important for 4G network development organized by the Communications Regulatory Authority (RRT). The auction commission on January 27th identified the highest bids in the auction of 900 MHz and 1800 MHz radio frequency bands. Omnitel is the first to choose the frequency blocks offered, Tele2 was second and Bite Lietuva was third. In total, the bidders would pay 38.1 million euros for the right to use the frequency bands concerned, the authority said.

ORLEN Lithuania nets 217 million euro profit

Lithuania-based oil refining company Orlen Lietuva generated a net profit of 217 million euro last year, company announced. In the fourth quarter alone, the Lithuanian company turned a net profit of 39 million euro, up from the losses of 62 million euro in the same period of 2014.

Lithuania offers more civil, political freedoms than Latvia

The World Freedom Index published on Wednesday, February 27, shows that Lithuania is doing better in ensuring civil and political liberties than Latvia but is behind the other neighbours, Poland and Estonia.

Funding for Lithuanian filmmakers to increase in 2016

The Lithuanian Film Centre is set to increase its funding and support for Lithuanian filmmakers to 2.66 million euro in 2016 and expects the number of foreign productions filmed in Lithuanian to grow in the year ahead.

Search for fishermen lost in fog in Curonian Lagoon

A number of fishermen got lost on the Curonian Lagoon ice on Monday evening as a result of a heavy fog. In the evening, Neringa Fire and Rescue Service received a call informing that three fishermen, who were ice-fishing close to the Preila village, got lost because of dense fog and could not get back to shore. After intensive search, the anglers were rescued.

Interior Minister: Europe’s security might trump freedom of movement

The European Union might have to sacrifice the free movement of people for the sake of security, if it fails to control the flow of migrants, Lithuanian Interior Minister Saulius Skvernelis said on Tuesday, January 26.

Lithuania starts blocking international betting websites

Lithuania has begun blocking access to the websites of some foreign online betting companies after tightening controls on online gaming operators at the start of this year. The Gaming Control Authority said on its website that access to the Internet sites of Betway, Unibet and WHG (International), which operates Williamhill.com, had been blocked.
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