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Monday 20.01.2020 | Name days: Aļģirds, Orests, Oļģerts, Alģis

Lithuanian respect for lost loved ones results in tons of cemetery candle waste

All Soul’s Day, a Lithuanian holiday marked on November 2, is a time for remembering a lost relative and lighting a candle in their memory. But could Lithuanians be overdoing it by buying excessive amounts of candles that end up in tons of plastic and glass waste?

Minimal gross wage in construction sector to reach EUR 780 in Latvia

The general agreement on minimal wage in the construction sector, which is set to come to force 3 November, states that the minimum gross wage is to reach EUR 780 and hourly rate – EUR 4.67 – in the entire industry in Latvia, as reported by Latvian Construction Contractors Partnership.

Ex-Daugavpils mayor’s case against State Language Centre submitted to court

The litigation of ex-Daugavpils mayor Rihards Eigims against the State Language Centre in regards to the centre’s fine for him weak state language skills has been sent to Latgale Regional Court.

Estonia sides with Huawei-critic U.S. in 5G development

Estonian head of government Jüri Ratas has agreed with U.S. government on a joint position as to security and the development of 5G mobile internet network. ERR reports that the move would mean turning the back on Chinese telecoms giant Huawei.

Five of the most common questions about safety of contact-free transactions

Although contact-free transactions have become a new norm for Latvian residents, some people still have doubts about the safety of this payment method, says Financial Industry Association’s communication specialist Ilze Vītola.

Moscow enforces its sovereign internet law

In Russia, its so-called sovereign internet law has come into force on Friday, November 1, raising concern over the implications of a new tool officially intended to provide the opportunity of the country disconnect itself from the world-wide web.

Minister’s wife confident there is no conflict of interest in SIF director’s selection process

Zaiga Pūce, long-standing non-government sector employees and wife to Latvia’s Environment Protection and Regional Development Minister Juris Pūce, is confident that the Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau will find no conflict of interests in her candidacy to the post of director of Social Integration Fund secretariat.

Latvian MEP will not discuss Bank of Latvia future with opposition

The future governor of the Bank of Latvia should have support from the opposition, says National Alliance «All for Latvia – For Fatherland and Freedom/LNNK» board member and European Parliament member Roberts Zīle.

Lithuanian doctor’s suicide sparks openness over workloads, abusive management

A doctor of leading Vilnius hospital has committed suicide prompting colleagues to speak out about systemic problems and their psychological effects on the working conditions of medical workers in the country.

SRS employee accused of disclosure of confidential information for alcohol and money

Riga Vidzeme Suburb Court has applied 200 hours of community service for an employee of State Revenue Service for disclosing confidential information and illegal acceptance of money and alcohol.

Syrian President seeking to regain control over Kurdish territories

Amid Syrian UN peace talks to end the eight-year civil war, Syrian President Bashar al Assad has voiced plans to regain control over the country’s north-east currently controlled by Kurdish militia, which has been under attack from Turkey.

Competition Council confused over waste management rules in Riga

In relation to waste collection in Riga, Competition Council has more questions than answers, admits the institutions leader Skaidrīte Ābrama.

Judges’ immunity in administrative violation cases may be abolished in Latvia

To enhance the independence and responsibility balance of judicial power, Latvia’s Saeima conceptually supported amendments to the Law on Judicial Power and Judicial Disciplinary Liability Law on Thursday, 31 October, as reported by Saeima’s press-service.

Baltic environment ministers sign joint climate declaration

During a meeting of Baltic environment ministers, Latvian Environment Protection and Regional Development Minister Juris Pūce, Estonian Environment Minister Rene Kokk and Lithuanian Environment Minister Kestutis Mažeika signed a joint climate declaration, affirming the three countries’ commitment towards long-term climate neutrality, as reported by Latvia’s Environment Ministry.

A gay-themed programme on national broadcaster triggers firestorm

Lithuanian media is pretty liberal, however the upgraded website of the national broadcaster,, funded with all taxpayers’ money, raise eyebrows of many for being what some call it jokingly «too gay friendly.» However, the most recent reportage on the website’s new programme «Spalvos» (Colours) about two gay male couples in the United Kingdom successfully raising adopted children was just too much to bear for Lithuanian hardliners.

Latvia’s president says it is the country’s interest to accept the budget for 2020

It is in the country’s interest to accept the government’s developed budget for 2020, said Latvia’s President Egils Levits after meeting with Prime Minister Krišjānis Kariņš on Thursday, 31 October.

European automobile giants Fiat Chrysler and Peugeot to merge

Italian car maker Fiat Chrysler and owner of French Peugeot, Groupe PSA, have agreed to merge in a company worth 40 million euros.

Standing NATO Mine Countermeasure Group 1 to arrive in Liepaja

Between 1st and 3rd November SNMCMG1 ships of the Standing NATO Mine Countermeasure Group 1 will be visiting Liepaja port. SNMCMG1 group also includes Latvia’s Navy ships M-06 Tālivaldis, as reported by Naval Forces Coast Guard.

To improve competition, Saeima supports amendments to Waste Management Law

On Thursday, 30 October, Latvia’s Saeima conceptually supported amendments to the Waste Management Law to help promote competition among waste management service providers, as reported by Saeima’s press-service.

Estonian industrial production decreases, electricity down by 43%

In Estonia, the production volume of industrial companies has dropped by five percent on year, according to official statistics.

Gazprom-led Nord Stream 2 passes final hurdle in Denmark

Denmark has allowed the construction of the Baltic Sea pipeline Nord Stream 2 in its territorial waters lifting the last obstacle for the massive project led by Russian energy giant Gazprom, according to Nord Stream 2 AG as quoted by LRT.

Latvia’s Saeima to limit officials’ activities in foundations and associations

On Thursday, 31 October, Latvia’s Saeima supported in the final reading a legislative draft that is intended to ensure officials who have jobs in associations, foundations and social companies are allowed to keep their jobs only if there are not paid wages, as reported by Saeima’s press-service.

Harmony would have lost large donations under new regulation this year

Had the new regulation on financing of political parties been adopted in Latvia this year, Harmony would have already exceeded the total permitted ceiling for financing and multiple other parties would have received considerably more donations than it would have been allowed under new rules, according to estimates from LETA.

German farmers sue government for lack of climate action

Germany has been taken to court for lack of action against climate change as three farmer families and Greenpeace are pointing to government commitments in the area.

Latvia’s Saeima approves budget plan for 2020 in first reading

The Saeima has conceptually approved the 2020 state budget project, medium-term budget plan for 2020, 2021 and 2022, as well as 26 accompanying legislative drafts associated with the budget, as confirmed by the parliament’s press-service.

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