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Tuesday 19.06.2018 | Name days: Nils, Viktors
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Week in Lithuania. Lithuania not affected by problems at Latvia's ABLV Bank

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUFinancial problems faced by ABLV, one of Latvia’s biggest commercial banks, will have no impact on the Lithuanian financial system, officials from the central Bank of Lithuania and the Lithuanian Banks’ Association (LBA) said this week. According to Vytautas Valvonis, director of the central bank’s Supervision Service, the Lithuanian financial system has become very independent in recent years. LBA President Mantas Zalatorius also says that ABLV’s turning to the Latvian central bank for financial support will have no impact on the Lithuanian financial system.

Director of major hospital arrested, then released

Kęstutis Strupas, director general of Vilnius University Hospital Santaros Klinikos, one of Lithuania’s major hospitals, has been suspended from his job on suspicions of abuse amid a large-scale corruption probe by law-enforcement bodies, the Health Ministry said on Thursday, February 22. The decision to suspend Professor Strupas was made during a meeting of the Health Ministry and Vilnius University, the hospital’s shareholders, it said.

Lithuania’s ex-judge Venckienė nabbed in US

Former Lithuanian judge and former MP Neringa Venckienė has been detained in Chicago, the United States, at Lithuania’s request for refusing to obey a court order to hand over her niece to her mother. The Prosecutor General’s Office and the Foreign Ministry said on Thursday, February 22, that the process of the suspect’s extradition to Lithuania had been initiated. Lithuanian law-enforcement want also to hold her liable for unlawful interfering with a bailiff’s operations and resisting the police.

SD Labour Party to hold assembly in late March

The Lithuanian Social Democratic Labour Party will hold its constituent assembly on March 24. Gediminas Kirkilas, one of the founders of the party, told journalists on Friday, February 23, the party would have around 3,000 founders. The core of the new party includes old members of the Social Democratic Party that split from the political force last year after it decided to leave the ruling coalition with the Lithuanian Farmers and Greens Union.

Kaunas set to bring Samsung

Kaunas, Lithuania‘s second-largest city, intends to invest 5 million euros in the territory of a former aviation factory and build the Aleksoto Innovations Park, if approval is secured from the council of Lithuania’s second city next week, with plans to bring the tech giant Samsung there, Kauno Diena daily reported.

International Book Fair opens in Vilnius

The four-day Vilnius Book Fair opened at the exhibition and congress centre Litexpo on Thursday, Februay 22. At the opening of the fair, President Dalia Grybauskaitė noted that this year’s event was special, as it was taking place on the 100-year anniversary of the country’s restored statehood. Held for the 19th time, this year’s fair is expected bring together 53 foreign delegations from 21 countries, including coming from Canada, the United States, Iran, Oman and Israel.

Lithuanian bodies underuse anti-corruption instruments

President Dalia Grybauskaitė says that Lithuania’s failure to improve its position in Transparency International’s latest Corruption Perception Index shows that the country’s bodies do not make sufficient use of the instruments they have to curb corruption. Lithuania ranked 38th out of 180 countries surveyed in the index released by Transparency International on Wednesday, February 21, unchanged from last year. This puts Lithuania ahead of Latvia, but behind Poland and Estonia.

Police reform brings positive results

Lithuania’s police reform has produced positive results, but some risks remain unmanaged, Interior Minister Eimutis Misiūnas said on Thursday, February 22. As the result of the reform, the number of officers on the street has increased by 1.5 times, the rate of response to incidents has increased, too, but not that significantly. With the focus on rapid response, the quality of investigations is at risk, some experts believe.

Constitutional Court to rule on wrongful dismissal

The Lithuanian Constitutional Court on Thursday, February 22, started hearing a case regarding ministers’ personal monetary liability for wrongful dismissal of employees or other wrongful decisions. The issue has been referred to the Constitutional Court by the Lithuanian Supreme Administrative Court, which is hearing an appeal by Raimundas Palaitis, a former interior minister, who is contesting an order for him to pay over 4,500 euros for firing Osvaldas Šarmavičius as director of the Civil Service Department. Courts have ruled that the director’s dismissal was too severe a disciplinary sanction.

Philip Morris may face fine in Lithuania

Global tobacco giant Philip Morris may face a fine in Lithuania for advertising its electronic smoking device IQOS. Lithuania’s Drug, Tobacco and Alcohol Control Department has made a preliminary conclusion that the devise should be subject to the same advertising restrictions as tobacco products, but it will adopt its final decision after hearing explanations from the producer.

Tomkus sells 80 pc stake in ELTA

Vitas Tomkus, the owner of the media group Respublikos Leidiniai, has sold 80 per cent of shares in the Lithuanian news agency ELTA. GM Media Invest, a company owned by ELTA CEO Gitana Markovičienė on Wednesday, Wednesday 21, purchased the stake from Tomkus and plans to buy the remaining 20 per cent of shares in the near future, the agency said. GM Media Invest last December purchased the Moteris, Mano Namai, Tavo Vaikas, Cosmopolitan and Panelė magazine publishing business and the websites of these brands from Delfi.

Telia Lithuania says Huawei equipment is safe

After US intelligence agencies have warned that American citizens should not use products made by Huawei, Lithuania’s telecoms company Telia Lietuva says that the Chinese manufacturer’s equipment that it uses is safe. According to the spokesman, Telia Lietuva uses equipment by various manufacturers and has used Huawei products for 10 years now.

Government to allow downing drones over military areas

The Lithuanian government approved on Wednesday, February 21, legal amendments to allow shooting down non-crewed aircraft flying without permission over military areas. The amendments, which will now go to the parliament for approval, would also ban unauthorized drones from flying over military areas and filming or photographing these areas. The proposed legislation would also give authorities the right to persecute or detain persons illegally visualising military areas.

Vilnius seeks over 350 mn euro from France’s Veolia

The city of Vilnius on Monday, February 19, filed a counterclaim against France’s Veolia, which withdrew from the Lithuanian capital’s heat supply sector last spring, and its local subsidiary Vilniaus Energija (Vilnius Energy) with the Stockholm arbitration court, seeking over 350 million euros in damages from the companies. With Vilniaus Energija’s 15-year lease on the Lithuanian capital’s heating system nearing expiration, Veolia and Vilniaus Energija in late 2016 asked the Stockholm arbitration court to appoint an independent valuer of the Vilnius district heat supply system. The dispute was later expanded to include investments and damages incurred by both sides in the city as they failed to agree on the value of the assets.

Court sentences for stealing money from Norwegian companies

A Lithuanian court on Monday, February 19, found three people guilty of stealing 246,000 euros from Norwegian companies by infecting their computers with malware. The Panevėžys regional court sentenced the organizer of the crime, identified by his initials D. S., to six years in prison. Combined with an earlier prison term, the man will spend seven years and a month behind bars.


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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

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

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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

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158 election sites to open in Riga during next Saeima elections

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

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Apple fined 5 million euros for customer rights violations in Australia

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Latvian coalition still torn about attracting highly-qualified guest workers

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Corruption watchdog requests criminal prosecution of Bank of Latvia head

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

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

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airBaltic receives its ninth Bombardier CS300 aircraft

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Employment agency invites employers to apply for new job support programme

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Programme: government continues working on MPC plan’s cancellation

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Latvia police investigate link between murdered insolvency administrator and missing businessman

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

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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

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Eurozone simulation with monthly billions to be quit in 2018

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

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