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Weekly News From Lithuania 24 May 2019

LT MFA StratCom

.@MarkGaleotti in the crowded room of the #Sakharov Conference, elaborating on non-state actors, such as hackers, extremists and militia, organised criminals as the real soldiers of the new political war of the Kremlin, aimed to divide, distract and dismay the West.

2:27 AM - 21 May 2019
Linas Linkevičius

commenced his
term in office. We
wish him all the
strength in stepping
up on reforms path.
Today Ambassador 
& Chargé d'affaires 
@B_RichardsonFApresented invitation to @UkrReformConf in Toronto. #Lithuania to continue assisting #Ukraine

3:38 AM - 20 May 2019
Lithuania MFA

#Europe’s first #basketball venue marks its 80th birthday in #Lithuania – take a look at the historic footage. The Lithuanian team won EuroBasket tournaments in 1937, 1939 and - 2003.

12:55 AM - 23 May 2019
OECD’s Ministerial Council Meeting pays special attention to emerging technologies

On 22-23 May, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Linas Linkevičius is attending the Meeting of the OECD Council at the Ministerial Level, which focuses on topical issues of global policy and strategic goals of the organization. This year, special attention is given to the potential and challenges of digital transition.

"Emerging technologies like 5g, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Blockhain, and Big Data cross state boundaries. In addition, global space is constantly changing. Thus, we need to find multilateral solutions making better use of the opportunities promised by emerging technologies," said L. Linkevičius during a discussion with other ministers from OECD countries.

Baltic and German Foreign Ministers meet in Hamburg

On 21 May, a traditional meeting of the Lithuanian, Latvian, Estonian, and German Foreign Ministers took place in Hamburg. The meeting discussed issues of security, the future of the European Union and its relations with eastern neighbors, as well as regional cooperation. In the meeting, Lithuania’s Foreign Minister Linas Linkevičius presented security issues and thanked Germany for its military contribution to NATO's efforts to ensure Baltic security. L. Linkevičius also stressed the need to increase NATO's deterrence and defense capabilities, and to strengthen the EU-NATO security cooperation.

Representatives of the Atlantic Council, influential U.S. think-tank, on a visit in Lithuania

“Now that it is in a very dangerous threat environment, Lithuania should continue what it is doing which is increase defence spending from 2 to 2.5 in overtime. That is appropriate for a frontline state which unfortunate Lithuania and other Baltic states are,” former US Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Walt Slocombe says. He is visiting Lithuania this week in a delegation of defence and security experts and shapers led by the Atlantic Council, an influential analytical centre of the U.S., in order to get first hand impressions about the Baltic security situation.

Lithuania's Honorary Consulate resumes its activities in Sapporo

On 23 May, Lithuania opened its Honorary Consulate in Sapporo after a year-long pause. Masahiro Fujii was appointed as the Honorary Consul of Lithuania in Hokkaido, Japan‘s largest prefecture. The Ambassador Gediminas Varvuolis presented him a consular patent.

The world’s most powerful laser created by Lithuanians is already working

On May 15, SYLOS, one of the most powerful laser systems in the world produced by Lithuanians, started working at the Laser Research Center in Hungary, Verslo žinios reports.

“Although lasers represent a relatively small share in the overall Lithuanian export market, they make Lithuania famous around the world and push global science to improvement. The need for laser technology worldwide is constantly increasing, so the development of products that have no alternatives and participation in such large international projects give more opportunities and further strengthen the position of Lithuania in laser science and industry,” says Gintaras Vilda, Vice Minister of Economy and Innovation, who participated in the ceremony.

EUR 130 mln to be invested into Vilnius Airport over 4 years

Around 130 mln euros will be invested into the expansion and reconstruction of Lithuania's largest Vilnius Airport over the next four years, until 2022, and annual revenue of Lietuvos Oro Uostai (Lithuanian Airports, LOU), the sate-run operator of three airports in Lithuania, is set to grow by around 43% to 63 mln euros, informed LETA/BNS.

The company's EBITDA margin is forecast to increase by 45-56% in 2019-2022, from 40 percent last year, according to Lietuvos Oro Uostai's 2018 report.

The volume of construction work carried out in Lithuania increased by 14% in Q1 2019

In I quarter 2019, the volume of construction work carried out in the country amounted to EUR 535.1 mln at current prices, and against the previous period, seasonally and calendar adjusted, increased by 14% (unadjusted – decreased by 40.6%).

Over a quarter, the volume of building construction increased by 18.3%, civil engineering structures – 8.8% more (unadjusted – 23.7% and 59.8% less respectively).

In I quarter 2019, against the respective period of the previous year, the volume of construction work carried out, calendar adjusted and unadjusted, increased by 18.6%.

Lithuanian Electric Buses to Hit the Roads by the End of Summer

At the end of summer, the first two Lithuanian electric buses Dancer should start operating in Klaipeda. Vejo projektai, the company that makes them, is almost done building them, while the Klaipeda Bus Park is waiting for the financing, which is planned to get alotted this month.


Your Guide to the Jewish Heritage of Vilnius

With bagels making a delicious comeback in Lithuania’s capital and a number of traditional Jewish celebrations becoming part of city life again, there’s a sense that Jewish culture is experiencing somewhat of a rebirth in Vilnius, which has many looking back at the city’s historic ties with its Jewish, or Litvak, community. 

And though the time machine has yet to be invented, it’s now possible to travel back in time to when Vilnius was known as the Jerusalem of the North. Unlocking the Jewish cultural heritage deeply embedded into the city’s streets, buildings, and history has just become a lot easier thanks to the new free guide entitled, Discover Jewish Heritage in Vilnius.

European Capital of Culture Forum 2019

The European Capital of Culture Forum is an annual event initiated by the team of Kaunas – European Capital of Culture 2022, where leaders representing various creative fields from all around Europe come together for gaining and sharing knowledge, getting inspiration, networking and discussing the opportunities for cooperation. One of the main objectives of this initiative is to encourage the culture of collaboration with other sectors, such as business, science or politics.

Lithuanian Story – Culture Festival

For the first time in Israel: chamber music, poetry night, performance art, contemporary indie and electronic music, contemporary dance and film from Lithuania.

May 25 2019

Weekly News From Lithuania 17 May 2019

Biennale di VeneziaVerified account

Golden Lion for Best National Participation in the #BiennaleArte2019 goes to the #LithuanianPavilion for its experimental spirit and unexpected treatment of national representation. “Sun & Sea (Marina)” is a critique of leisure and of our times.… https://t.co/46hQcHTp4G

2:40 AM - 11 May 2019
Linas Linkevičius

Discussed #FutureOfEurope w Lithuanians working at & for #EU institutions. No certain answers but few things are certain: values are as important as tangible benefits, we shall not take pro-European optimism for granted, only when Europe gets understandable it becomes admirable.

12:29 PM - 12 May 2019
Lithuania MFA

We are proud to join
others across Europe
on #DuoDay2019 and
welcome today Mantas
Brazauskis in 
We are dedicated to
promote equal
working rights for
people with disabilities. 

1:13 AM - 16 May 2019
Final results: almost 4 thousand votes separate Lithuanian presidential election frontrunners

The final results of the first round of Lithuania's presidential election put Ingrida Simonyte's lead over Gitanas Nauseda at 3,935 votes.

The Central Electoral Commission (CEC) updated the results after finishing counting the votes of Lithuanian citizens who voted abroad on Monday.

The final results published by the election watchdog show MP Simonyte, the candidate of the conservative Homeland Union–Lithuanian Christian Democrats, coming first with 31.21 percent of the vote and independent economist Nauseda second with 30.93 percent.

FM Linkevičius calls to consider separate election constituencies for Lithuanians abroad

High voter turnout among Lithuanians living abroad in Sunday's presidential election is a basis for starting discussions on establishing one or two separate election constituencies abroad, Foreign Minister Linas Linkevičius says.

L. Linkevičius: We need to help Eastern Partners, who are experiencing economic pressure and military aggression due to their European choice

On 13 May, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Linas Linkevičius participated in the Eastern Partnership Foreign Ministers' meeting in Brussels.

The Lithuanian Foreign Minister named the Eastern Partnership as one of the most successful policies of the European Union and emphasized its huge practical benefits to ordinary people. 

L. Linkevičius reiterated also Lithuania's strong political commitment to an ambitious Eastern Partnership policy in the future.

Lithuania to head EU programme for simplified military mobility procedures

Today, May 14, an agreement of fourteen members of the European Union on simplification of military mobility procedures was signed at a meeting in Brussels. 

The programme aimed at concerting and simplifying the procedures applied to cross-border movement of forces between EU members states will be headed by Lithuania.

Lithuania will chair the Managing Committee of the programme: its task is to supervise the implementation and provide guidelines to subordinate expert tasks forces which will be developing technical requirements.

Lithuania keeps increasing its production levels

Eurostat announces that industrial production fell down by 0.3% in euro area and 0.1% in EU28 In March 2019 compared with February 2019.

In February 2019, industrial production fell by 0.1% in the euro area and remained stable in the EU28. In March 2019 compared with March 2018, industrial production decreased by 0.6% in the euro area and increased by 0.4% in the EU28.

The highest increases were observed in Lithuania (+3.5%), Denmark (+1.8%) and Slovakia (+1.2%).

Vilnius airport launches 'smart' gates

Vilnius Airport has launched automated border control gates to facilitate the flow of passengers through the airport, Lietuvos Oro Uostai (Lithuanian Airports) said on Friday.

No other airport in the Baltic countries and Poland currently has such a system, the airport's operator said.

"In addition to the State Border Guard Service (VSAT) counters, we now offer passengers the possibility of self-service border checks," Vilnius Airport CEO Dainius Ciuplys said in a press release.

Lithuania: Smart Energy Fund together with Honda invested in the leading smart battery company Moixa

Smart Energy Fund powered by Lietuvos Energija (Lithuanian Energy), and managed by Contrarian Ventures along with Honda, Japanese automobile manufacturer, and other partners invested in Moixa, UK-based company developing smart energy storage devices and virtual power plants technologies, informed representative of the Lietuvos energija.

The UK smart battery specialist has received fresh funding of around 10 mln EUR. Smart Energy Fund managed by Contrarian Ventures has invested 500 thousand EUR. Other investors include ITOCHU Corporation, a Japanese investment house and Fortune 500 company and UK-based venture capital investor First Imagine! Ventures.

Construction launched on EUR 15 mln Moxy hotel in Kaunas

Construction is being launched on a 15-million-euro Moxy hotel, part of the Marriott Group, in Lithuania's second-biggest city of Kaunas, with the developers planning to build more Moxy and Marriott hotels in the Baltic countries, informe LETA/BNS.

The new hotel in Kaunas will target primarily young professionals.

Janusz Mitulski, head for development in Central and Eastern Europe at Marriott International, says Kaunas was chosen because of its geographical location and potential.


Lithuanian pavilion at Venice Biennale gets top reward
Lithuania's pavilion at the 58th Venice Biennale features an artificial beach where "vacationers" participate in a contemporary opera performance about climate change won "Golden Lion".

Officially opened on Friday, the pavilion is the stage of the Sun & Sea (Marina) opera performance by Rugile Barzdziukaite, Vaiva Grainyte and Lina Lapelyte.

The audience can view more than 20 performers lying down on 35 tons of sand and singing for eight hours from above. Visitors are also welcome to join the performers on the artificial beach. They are required to pre-register and bring their bathing suits and towels and lounge on the beach for at least three hours.

The European Night of Museums in Kaunas: what to wait
Since 2011, the International Council of Museums has been sponsoring The European Night of Museums. By welcoming the public at night, museums provide visitors with a new perspective on their collections, applying a more creative and sensory approach, writes visit.kaunas.lt.

Since 2011, the International Council of Museums has been sponsoring The European Night of Museums, which is celebrated every year on the third Saturday of May.

By welcoming the public at night and offering free events including concerts, performances, plays, exhibitions, excursions, educational sessions, film reviews, amusements, etc., museums provide visitors with a new perspective on their collections, applying a more creative and sensory approach.

Exhibition of world-recognised Litvak artist will be opened in his hometown

In 1932, Arbit Blatas opened the first private gallery in the Baltics in Kaunas. On May 11, the exhibition of the world-recognised Litvak artist will be opened in his hometown.

On May 11, during Gallery Weekend Kaunas, the exhibition “Arbit Blatas (1908–1999): from Kaunas to New York” will be opened at the M. Žilinskas Art Gallery.

Born in Kaunas, Neemija Arbitblatas was a world-recognised Litvak artist of outstanding talent who used to call himself by the creative name Arbit Blatas.

May 24 2019

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