bnn.lv Latviski   bnn-news.com English   bnn-news.ru По-русски
Ceturtdiena 21.06.2018 | Name days: Monvīds, Egita, Emīls
LithuaniaLithuania

Week in Lithuania. Lithuania buying Norwegian air defence systems

FaceBook
Twitter
Draugiem
print
(No Ratings Yet)

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

Lithuanian defence officials have announced intention to buy Norwegian medium-range air-defence systems NASAMS in hopes of patching one of the biggest defence gaps.

Published last week, the state budget draft envisages 122.379 million euros for acquisition and modernization of medium-range air defence systems within the next three years, with about equal amounts earmarked in 2018, 2019 and 2020. Lithuania’s Armed Forces should reportedly have the system available by 2020. Air defence is one of the weakest points in the Baltic states. Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia currently only have short-range anti-aircraft defence systems with a range of 3-5 km. Meanwhile, ten Norwegian missiles fly a few dozen km and take down targets at an altitude of 15 km.

PM offers Vilnius as venue for regional World Economic Forum event

Amid Lithuania’s plans of developing the infrastructure of electric cars, Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis suggested hosting a regional event of the World Economic Forum in Vilnius. Skvernelis made the offer to Klaus Martin Schwab, the forum’s founder and board chairman, at a meeting in Vilnius on Friday, October 13. He also emphasised the importance of cyber and information security, Lithuania’s aspirations of joining the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and planned active cooperation with the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN).

Lithuanian dairy firm clashes with Estonia’s Estover

Žemaitijos Pienas, one of Lithuania’s largest dairy companies, has initiated a dispute with Estonian milk processor Estover over a sign of string cheese. Žemaitijos Pienas said it had filed a suit with an Estonian court over the Pik-Nik brand, demanding that Estover should be banned from using a similar sign in Estonia where it sells its production.

Ignalina N-plant gets go-ahead for tests

Lithuania’s State Nuclear Power Safety Inspectorate (VATESI) has given a green light to the Ignalina Nuclear Power Plant (NPP), which is no longer operational, to start hot tests of the radioactive waste sorting and storage complex. If the tests are successful, the plant will start storing the waste in the new complex in 2018. Ina Daukšienė, spokeswoman for Ignalina, informed that the complex would store 2,500 cubic meters of short-term waste, which will require nearly 1,200 concrete containers, and 2,000 cubic meters of long-term waste that will need 840 metal containers. The processes waste will be stored for up to 50 years before burial in burial sites, which still need to be constructed. The nearly 200-million-euro complex was built by a Russian-capital German company Nukem Technologies.

Landsbergis awarded Lithuanian Diplomacy Star

Foreign Minister Linas Linkevičius on Thursday, October 12, bestowed the ministry’s sign of honour, the Lithuanian Diplomacy Star, to Vytautas Landsbergis, the chairman of the country’s Supreme Council – Reconstituent Seimas who is often titled as the first-post independence state leader. Landsbergis received the ministry’s highest award for his outstanding merits to Lithuania’s statehood and international recognition, the Foreign Ministry said. The Lithuanian Diplomacy   Star award has been conferred since 2010 for Lithuanian and foreign citizens and organizations for promoting Lithuania’s name and fostering interstate relations.

Seimas approved increased presence in foreign missions

The Parliament on Thursday, October 12, gave a green light to dispatch of more troops to international missions abroad, including increased participation in efforts against the Islamic State group. The bid was supported by 87 parliamentarians, with no votes against or abstentions. Under the resolution, Lithuania will be able to send up to 40 military and civilian members of the defence system to the Inherent Resolve and Spartan Shield operations headed by the US-led coalition. Currently, up to 30 troops can be sent to Inherent Resolve. Six instructors have been sent to the mission and they can be sent for training of Iraq’s Armed Forces. Currently, about 90 Lithuanian soldiers serve in nine international operations and missions in Afghanistan, Iraq, Kosovo, Ukraine, Mali, the Central African Republic and the Mediterranean Sea.

Delfi.lt news portal gets new editor-in-chief

Rasa Lukaitytė-Vnarauskienė will replace Monika Garbaciauskaitė-Budrienė in the post of editor-in-chief of Lithuania’s most popular delfi.lt news portal, the portal said on Thursday, October 12. Garbaciauskaitė-Budrienė said she had decided to reshuffle her professional priorities and focus on journalistic and creative work, pledging to continue her cooperation with delfi.lt. Lukaitytė-Vnarauskienė has graduated the Vilnius University with a degree in journalism and master’s degree in economics, she has been working for delfi.lt since 2006. After a few years as a reporter of economic news, she has been heading the business news desk for the past two years and serving as deputy editor-in-chief.

MP: inflation won’t eat up revenue growth

Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis says that people are more sensitive about inflation than they should be, adding that the price hike would not be steep enough to outdo growing salaries.

«We will definitely not have (inflation of) 5 percent, from what we project, salaries in the private sector should grow by 10 percent and in the public sector by 6 percent this year. In light of the next year’s budget, inflation will not eat it all,» Skvernelis told Žinių Radijas news radio on Thursday morning.

The annual inflation stood at 4.8 per cent in September, as compared year-on-year, while the average annual inflation was 3 per cent (4.4 per cent and 2.6 per cent in August, respectively). Lithuania’s Finance Ministry projected in September that the average annual inflation for 2017 would be 3.5 per cent in light of the faster increase in prices for services, which is 0.1 percentage points above the spring estimates.

Government grants railway company 36 mn euro

Lietuvos Geležinkeliai (Lithuanian Railways, LG), which were recently slammed a fine of nearly 28 million euros from the European Commission (EC) for competition offense, should next year receive close to 36 million euros in compensation for passenger transport losses. Transport and Communications Minister Paulius Martinkus said the decision to compensate the losses incurred by the state-run railway company from carrying passengers had been taken in spring of 2017.

«When the budget drafting was started in spring, the decision was taken to move in the direction to cover for special obligations from the budget, at the same time, Lietuvos Geležinkeliai will be required to pay dividend. This is the practice from now on,» Martinkus said.

The 2018 state budget draft envisages 35.752 million euros for the railway company.

Mantas Dubauskas, spokesman for LG, said the losses incurred due to carrying passengers had not been compensated by the state until now.

Ref: 020/111.111.111.5085


Leave a reply

Ukraine's anti-corruption court law insufficient to IMF commitments

The International Monetary Fund has commended the Ukrainian parliament for passing a law to establish an anti-corruption court and pointed to need to amend it to ensure the court can work effectively.

Opinion: they’re trying to shut us up; KPV LV is inconvenient for current government

«We are inconvenient for the current government, the established order, because for the first time a party is prepared to use facts in its rhetoric in the pre-election period. They are trying to shut us up,» said KPV LV prime minister candidate Aldis Gobzems at a press-conference after Artuss Kaimiņš was taken away by Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau.

Hydro and wind power plants produced 70.5% more electricity last year

In 2017 gross energy consumption in Latvia comprised 194.9 petajoules, which is 5.5 % more than in 2016. Over the past five years, the gross energy consumption has not changed significantly. However the share of renewable energy has increased by 2.55 percentage points.

Milder penalties for the accused in digital TV case; idea’s authors get no prison sentence

Riga Regional Court has released a shortened ruling in the so-called digital television criminal case. With it, the court acquitted previously convicted former director of Latvia’s National Theatre Ojārs Rubenis. Nevertheless, some of the accused have been sentenced to fines and actual prison time.

Estonian traitor Simm ruled to serve full 12.5 years in prison

A court in Tartu has decided that the Estonian Defence Ministry ex-official Herman Simm, found guilty of treason in 2009 and sentenced to 12.5 years in jail, has to serve his full sentence, not to be released earlier.

CPCB officers detain Kaimiņš after Saeima meeting

Officers of Latvia’s Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau detained Saeima deputy Artuss Kaimiņš after the end of the parliament’s meeting.

Around 15% of Estonian 15-19-year-olds estimated to have mental illness

In Estonia, an estimated total of 20,000-40,000 adolescents, comprising 10-20% of all teenage Estonians, have been found to suffer from a mental illness and close to 3,000 children have been prescribed antidepressants.

Chief: Anti-Money Laundering Service should not submit to a single person

Anti-Money Laundering Service should not be controlled by a single person, says chief of the Control Service Ilze Znotiņa.

Saeima permits commencement of criminal process against Artuss Kaimiņš

This week Latvia’s Saeima voted in favour of the decision to detain and then perform a search in the home of Saeima member Artuss Kaimiņš from KPV LV political party.

U.S. withdraws from UN Human Rights Council voicing sharp criticism

The U.S. has withdrawn from the United Nations Human Rights Council describing the body as being politically biased and not working towards reducing human rights violations globally.

Latvian minister confirms interrogation by Lithuanian investigators

In the case regarding possible corruption in the National Blood Centre, Lithuanian services have interrogated Latvia’s Healthcare Minister Anda Čakša, as confirmed by the official.

Recreational use of marijuana legalised in Canada

Canadian Parliament has adopted a law legalising the recreational use of marijuana nationwide after medical use of the drug has been allowed since 2001. Canada is to become the second country in the world allow buying marijuana for recreational use.

Human Rights Committee: KGB documents should be made publicly accessible

Documents left from Latvian SSR KGB office are part of national document heritage and therefore should be handed over for lifetime storage and be made publicly accessible for research in Latvia’s National Archive.

Non-negotiated contracts; fictive deals: digital television introduction schemes for «mere mortals»

The criminal process revolving around digital television project’s realization in Latvia was launched 15 years ago – in 2003. And it began with a search in a company owned by Andris Šķēle. After that, the list of involved people started expanding with names like Andrejs Ēķis, Jurģis Liepnieks and others.

Doctors unjustifiably charged fees for services worth 255,000 last year

Last year, authorities found that medical institutions that provide state budget-financed healthcare services had charged fees for services worth EUR 254,994, according to data compiled by Health Inspectorate.

Budget Committee picks Swedbank economist for Bank of Latvia Council

On Tuesday, 19 June, Saeima’s Budget and Finance Committee unanimously decided to submit to the Saeima a decision project regarding approval of Mārtiņš Kazāks for the post of member of the council of the Bank of Latvia, as confirmed by Saeima’s press-service.

Farmers Saeima proposes declaring state of emergency in Latvia’s agriculture sector

Farmers Saeima association has sent a letter to Latvia’s State Chancellery, Agriculture Ministry, Finance Ministry and Latvian Association of Local and Regional Governments, detailing a request addressed to the Cabinet of Ministers and Saeima to declare a state of emergency in the country’s agriculture sector because of the lasting drought.

IT specialist’s lawyers appeal client's arrest in recent restaurant case

Lawyers of Edgars Štrombergs, who is the accused party in the Vairāk saules restaurant cash register data manipulation case, have appealed the security measure applied to him, as confirmed by sworn attorney Mareks Halturins.

Russian and Belarusian arms control experts hosted by Lithuania

Russian and Belarusian arms control inspectors have been hosted by Lithuania as NATO forces trained across the Baltic states and Poland in exercise Saber Strike 2018.

Latvia’s ports suffer freight volume decline in first five months of 2018

Latvian ports handled 27.072 million tonnes of freight in the first five months of this year, which is 7.5% less when compared to the same period of last year, according to data compiled by Transport Ministry.

Bicycle rickshaws in Tallinn will need safety belts from July

Seeking to regulate the provision of bicycle rickshaw services in the Estonian capital, the Tallinn City Council has is to more particular bicycle rickshaw regulations that would align the services closer to car taxis.

158 election sites to open in Riga during next Saeima elections

A total of 158 election sites are planned to be opened in Riga for this autumn’s Saeima elections, as confirmed by documents prepared by Riga City Council.

30% of Latvian residents are dissatisfied with their family’s financial state

Residents’ overall mood has declined considerably across all survey positions. Residents have become the most negative about Latvia’s economic situation – 31% of them believe it has worsened. When asked to voice their outlooks for Latvia’s economy in a year from now, 17% of respondents said it will have improved, according to results of Baltic International Bank’s latest Latvian Barometer.

Apple fined 5 million euros for customer rights violations in Australia

A court in Australia has ruled that U.S. tech firm Apple has to pay a fine of 5.7 million euros refusing to repair iPhones and iPads that had been serviced by third parties as those actions breached consumer law.

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.