Observer Latvija SIA
WEEK 5th. 2004

Friday, the 30th of January, 2004

Development agency establishes in Hamburg
On January 29, a representative office of Latvian Development Agency was opened in Hamburg. 120 politicians and entrepreneurs attended the event. Germany is the number one external trade partner of Latvia and the second largest investor. The main directions of the representative office will include information technologies, development of small and medium innovatory companies, as well as port and transit services. The First Burgomaster of Hamburg, Ole von Beust, stressed that the cooperation with the Baltic States is one of the priorities of the city senate. Analogue offices are opened in Great Britain, Sweden, France, Kazakhstan and Russia. They are fostering the increase of export from Latvia and investments in Latvian economy.
(Biznes & Baltija)

Thursday, the 29th of January, 2004

Coalition slants
The entrepreneurs are worried about the impact the decision of the Latvian First Party to leave the coalition will have on the further actions of the government and on the Latvian economy in general. The Prime Minister, Ainars Repse, stated that he respects the decision of the party, however, he regrets that capable ministers will leave the government. The entrepreneurs interviewed by the newspaper feel sorry about the recent happenings because there are still many unfinished works in Latvia to be done. The president of the Latvian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Andris Lasmanis, believes that the government members should consider the impact their actions will have on the state and the Latvian economy before making any decision. Several of the questioned entrepreneurs were positively evaluating the work of the former Minister of Economy, Juris Lujans.
(Dienas Bizness)

Tuesday, the 27th of January, 2004

Loans for development of the companies
The Latvian Mortgage Bank has started issuance of loans to the entrepreneurs in the framework of the second stage of the Latvian small and middle size companies’ development crediting program. EUR 30 million will be given in loans for investment project of these companies. The manufacturing industry, hospitality and tourism sectors, construction, trade and service sectors will receive special attention. The funding of the European Investment Bank and the European Investment Fund has been attracted to execute the program. The goal of the program is to finance projects, which would not be able to receive financing in any other way.
(Dienas Bizness)

Monday, the 26th of January, 2004

Analysts increase GDP forecast
Hansabank Markets has increased the GDP prognosis for the last year from 6.9 percent to 7.1-7.4 percent. It was done due to the high growth of GDP in the third quarter, when it increased by 7.3 percent. Nevertheless, the forecast for GDP increase in 2004 has remained the same. According to Hansabank Markets, the GDP will increase by 6.4 – 6.5 percent this year. The largest growth is expected in construction, trade and service sectors. Due to the improvement of external conditions and increase of competitiveness of domestic companies the development pace of production and transport sectors should increase as well. The Bank of Latvia has previously reported that GDP will increase by 7.2 percent in 2003, and by some 7 percent in 2004.
(Dienas Bizness)

Report about fictive business
Last year, the General Prosecutor’s Office received more than 15,000 reports about deals, which could be fictitious. The General Prosecutor, Janis Maizitis, stresses that the number of these reports was significantly increasing during the last years. Yet the law enforcement institutions are not active in using this data. Last year, different inquiry institutions asked for the information on fictitious deals only 21 times.
(Dienas Bizness)

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