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Weekly News from Lithuania, January 17


January 17, 2020            

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Today ambassador @AudraPlepyte was elected as Vice President of @UNICEF_Board for the upcoming year! Congratulati… https://t.co/2TkO2TtfPw

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Seimas awarded the Freedom Prize 2019


Albinas Kentra, a chronicler of the Lithuanian history, member of the Lithuanian resistance and prisoner of the Soviet Gulag, was awarded the Freedom Prize 2019 in a solemn ceremony held in the Hall of the Act of 11 March.

At the award ceremony, the winner was presented with the Statuette of Liberty by Viktoras Pranckietis, Speaker of the Seimas, and with a Diploma of the Freedom Prize presented by Radvilė Morkūnaitė-Mikulėnienė, Member of the Seimas and Chair of the Freedom Prize Commission.

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L. Linkevičius: European Union can and must play important role in de-escalating tensions in Iraq


On 10 January, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Linas Linkevičius attended the Foreign Affairs Council in Brussels. The Council was briefed on the latest developments in Iraq, including through an exchange with the Secretary General of NATO Jens Stoltenberg, and discussed the role of the EU in de-escalating heightened tensions in the Middle East region.

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Czech soldiers from the #NATO enhanced Forward Presence Battlegroup Lithuania exercising in Pabradė polygon      |      Credits @ NATO Joint Force Command Brunssum - JFCBS

Scientists: circular economy is not only about recycling

Lithuania, like other small open economies in Eastern Europe, is often characterized by linear production and consumption. Despite the European Union (EU) initiatives to prompt practical implementation of the principles of the circular economy, the problems of insufficient production from natural resources, relatively short  product consumption term and small product reuse, limited waste recycling and new value creation from waste are still relevant.






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Global Technology Leader Rocket Software Opens Technology Centre in Vilnius

Invest Lithuania, the official agency for foreign direct investment and business development in Lithuania, today announced that Rocket Software has opened a new development centre in Vilnius and plans to hire more than 200 engineers and programmers in the next 2-3 years. Rocket®, which was founded in 1990 in Boston, Massachusetts, employs 1500 Rocketeers around the world. The company specialises in Z Systems, Power Systems, and Database & Connectivity, and helps the world’s leading companies leverage open source, cloud, and artificial intelligence (AI) to support their ability to achieve legendary results.

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Investors are ready to invest in renewable energy in Lithuania without state support

Today the National Energy Regulatory Council (NERC) has confirmed the winner of renewable energy auctions. The price premium to the electricity exchange price offered by the successful investor is EUR 0 per MWh. This means that the project will be developed without state support.

“It is the breaking point in Lithuania’s renewable energy, since it is the first time that investments are made into wind farms without state support. Lithuania has evidently managed to create a particularly attractive environment for energy-related investments. It means lower dependency on electricity import, more jobs, and higher income for the state,” says Minister of Energy Žygimantas Vaičiūnas.


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Lithuania must balance the benefits of fintech

"To attract more visitors to Siauliai region and provide more information on local tourists attractions, the new app will allow tourists to use the provided routes interactively and get acquainted with information about attractions using a mobile decide," Ruta Stankuviene, head of the local tourism information center, said in a statement.

This is the first app about Siauliai region and it will provide photos and descriptions of tourist attractions in four languages, including Lithuanian, Latvian, English and Russian.

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Vilnius Festival of Lights to illuminate the secrets of historic courtyards


Vilnius Festival of Lights will light up the city at the end of next week, highlighting the city’s architecture and illuminating the most beautiful courtyards.

The festival on January 24-26 also coincides with the city's 697th anniversary, according to the municipality's press release.

“We have been celebrating the birthday of Vilnius [...] since the Festival of Lights came into existence," says Remigijus Šimašius, the Mayor of Vilnius.


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Kaunas Full of Culture: The Yearbook of 2019 is out


The 200-page book offers last year’s most exciting reads as well as a cultural event agenda for 2020.

Kaunas Full of Culture is a monthly magazine distributed free of charge. Now in its fifth year, the publication is  available in both Lithuanian and English. Together with the magazine’s first edition of 2020, the editorial office has just presented the yearbook of 2019.


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Ever had one of those priceless moments when after grey December days,
the sky finally glows with clear winter sun? The seaside of Lithuania's Curonian Spit
is the perfect place to catch one of these winter miracles
       |              Credits @ Lithuania. Real is beautiful

January 20
Ringing frames: performances and improvisations | MO

Two part programme will invite you to enjoy Fluxus inspired performance of Dieter Schnebel: Museumsstücke as well as impro music session at the Museum of Modern Art. The event is open to everyone.

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January 23 - February 9
15th French Film festival "Winter Screens"

The 15th anniversary celebrating festival will invite viewers to discoveries of present time and dive into charm of coincidences. More than 30 selected films will be screened across Lithuania.


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A piece of Lithuania in the heart of Chicago

A drab building complex in Chicago's West Lawn houses the offices of powerful Chicago Democrat Michael J. Madigan, aka the Velvet Hammer, speaker of the Illinois house. His office sits on the second floor of the somber edifice at 6500 S. Pulaski , its exteriors brown and gray and respectable.

This is, however, not the only thing at 6500 S. Pulaski. A Lithuanian flag at the door offers up a tantalizing hint to idle passersby. The Balzekas Museum of Lithuanian Culture, the largest Lithuanian museum outside of Lithuania, is an unlikely neighbor for Madigan's chambers.

"When you go to another country, you don't lose your background, you add to the background," says Stanley Balzekas Jr., a 95-year-old Lithuanian American who founded the museum 50 years ago.

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Highlight of the Week
Minister Linas Linkevičius met with the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Poland Jacek Czaputowicz

Photo credits @ Jurijus Azanovas / MOD

Jan 18 2020

Weekly News from Lithuania, December 20 2019


December 20, 2019             

Lithuania allocates humanitarian aid to Albania


The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania has allocated additional EUR 10, 000 for humanitarian aid to Albania. The funds will be transferred to the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.

This action contributes to the response to the earthquake that struck on 26 November 2019 near Tirana, the capital of Albania, and to the provision of humanitarian aid to the victims of disaster.

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Development of the joint brigade discussed by Lithuanian, Polish and Ukrainian representatives in Vilnius

President Gitanas Nausėda met with leaders of the Nordic and Baltic countries before the first working session of the European Council. The meeting focused on climate change policy, multiannual financial framework, implementation of the EU strategic agenda and Brexit.

The President highlighted Lithuania’s determination to shift to a climate-neutral policy by 2050 and support the implementation of innovative and environmentally friendly technologies to achieve this target.

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The President: the Baltic strength lies in unity

President Gitanas Nausėda met with Latvian President Egils Levit and Estonian President Kersti Kaljulaid in Riga.

“The strength of the Baltic States lies in their unity, and I am convinced that regular meetings of the Presidents are the best platform for discussing strategic guidelines, future visions and challenges. We need to monitor geopolitical processes together and strengthen common stance in shaping EU and NATO policies”, said Gitanas Nausėda.


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Why Lithuania was the perfect fit for Hollister
 Credits @ Invest Lithuania

The Spurt of Lithuanian Start-ups Continues: €166.5 Million of Investment was Attracted Within the Year

2019 is a memorable year in the Lithuanian start-up ecosystem: the number of innovative companies is nearing 1,000, startups have attracted more than €166,5 million. Vinted, the country’s first start-up to become a unicorn, which has attracted a record amount of investment so far – €128 million, has also proven that innovative products crated by Lithuanian start-ups have great potential.


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One Successful Day Redeems All the Bad Ones, Says Startup Founders

What is the secret to a successful startup? The startup community is growing exponentially, we can rejoice at innovations that attract increasingly higher investments, however, quite a few startups fail before even reaching the market. This raises a question – what are the professional and personal challenges that startup founders face, what influences their successes and failures?

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  Go Vilnius
9:43 AM - Dec 17, 2019

Vilnius is proud being home to talented and ambitious entrepreneurs who change the rules of their fields. Therefore there's a new Startup #Museum in #Vilnius celebrating the city's entrepreneurial spirit through the stories of a dozen home-grown startups that have achieved global success. From mobility to cosmos startups, the museum is a space to learn and draw inspiration for your own #billion-dollar idea! ? #GoVilnius #startup #success

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Innovative construction materials manufacturer is being established in Klaipėda FEZ


A Monaco based company GRH International has established a new company in Klaipėda’s Free Economic Zone.

GRH International has been developing technology to enable the production of sustainable and innovative materials for the construction market. The new company GRH LT is committed to taking this development further and to introducing new multi-layered composite panels for the building industry. It plans to employ up to 50 people for various R&D, production and administrative functions.



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Podcast Technotronika: First Lithuanian Unicorn: I Had to Play “All in”

The second season of the podcast Technotronika begins with one of the brightest stars in this year’s startup world – the unicorn Vinted! Mantas Mikuckas the co-founder and COO of this startup will tell you what three cycles each startup has to go through and why Vinted was in a
deadlock? How has the business been influenced by greening trends and what is his approach to preserving the planet?

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  Lithuania. Real is beautiful
9:06 AM - Dec 16, 2019

Spending Christmas in Lithuania? You’re in luck – because Santa is, too! Just a short drive from Lithuania's capital, Vilnius, you’ll find our other 'capital city' – Trakai, the Lithuanian capital of culture and, for the holidays, home of Santa! You'll find plenty here to entertain you over the holiday season, from workshops and family-friendly theatre shows to exhibitions and concerts. Find out more: http://bit.ly/Christmas-in-Trakai Photo credit: Andrius Aleksandravičius

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BALTIC RIOT – 5 Lithuanian artists to watch


Contemporary Lynx presents to you five noteworthy Lithuanian artists, whose art is striking, even amongst the melancholic and magical atmospheres present in Lithuania, Heart of the Baltics.

The list includes Patricija Jurkšaitytė, Šarūnas Sauka, Adomas Danusevičius, Augustinas Serapinas and Deimantas Narkevičius. What is so special about them?

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Les Arcs trains its spotlight on Lithuania


Lithuania will be one of the four countries under the spotlight of the 11th Les Arcs Film Festival, which will take place from 14-21 December. The country’s presence is quite impressive, as one film will be screened in the Official Competition, three projects are ready to be presented in the industry section, and three features and two shorts will be screened under the festival’s spotlight. In addition, the gathering will welcome the biggest delegation of almost 20 Lithuanian film professionals to
the event.

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Street in Vilnius tells a hidden story of Litvaks and conversion


Šv. Stepono street, stretching from the edge of the old town, hides stories of conversions from Judaism to Christianity and hidden signs of a buzzing Vilnius Jewish life.

As Lithuania gears up to mark 2020 as the year of the Vilna Gaon and the History of the Jews of Lithuania, LRT English together with Vilnius University and Jewish Heritage Lithuania bring you a series of stories exploring Litvak history.

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Christmas Towns of Vilnius – a magic feast at the heart of the city


Colourful fairs attracting thousands of visitors have been held all over Europe to make waiting for the most beautiful holiday of the year more exciting. Compared to the largest European capitals, Christmas Towns in the Cathedral and the Town Hall Square of Vilnius are still very young, but have already become a part of the festive capital culture, with their own traditions and a distinctive face.

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The Most Influential Artists of 2019

Rugilė Barzdžiukaitė, Vaiva Grainytė, and Lina Lapelytė included in the annual list of the most influential artists of the year.

The artists mounted an unusual opera at the Venice Biennale’s Lithuanian pavilion this year. The trio swiftly became the talk of the town—and the art world—as they clinched the ultimate prize, the Golden Lion. Culling together their collective expertise in art, filmmaking, theater, music, and writing, the trio staged Sun & Sea (Marina) (2019), a searing and humorous treatise on climate change.



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December 21
Uptown Christmas’19: Last-minute market

„Uptown Christmas’19: Last-minute market” – the best place for original Christmas presents under one roof. On the 21-23h of December LOFTAS will be surrounded by great music, festive atmosphere and the smell of mulled wine.

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December 20 - January 5
The Alternative Christmas Courtyard

This is a rare opportunity to see the new face of Lukiškės Prison. Don’t forget to capture the moment because you might have to wait a long time for another experience like this. The festive installation will light up the entire courtyard, transforming it into a interesting space.

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December 25
Christmas night...

Chamber Orchestra of Vilnius University invites to spend the magical Christmas evening together with the best Christmas music, known melodies in a new light.

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4th Honorary Consulate opened in Australia

On 13 December, the Ambassador of Lithuania to Australia Gediminas Varvuolis opened the Honorary Consulate of Lithuania in Darwin. Egle Garrick, an active member of the Lithuanian World Community, was appointed as the Honorary Consul of Lithuania in the Northern Territory.

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Highlight of the Week
Merry Christmas from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs!

Photo credits @ Gabrielė Niekytė

Jan 10 2020

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