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 Observer Latvija SIA

WEEK 19.2006

Tuesday, the 9th of May, 2006

No grand plans for tourisms development in Latvia
The Committee of the Cabinet of Ministers has approved Latvian Tourism Development Action Plan 2006 by setting rather low goals. It is planned to increase the number of foreign tourists in Latvia by only 10 percent although in the previous years it increased by 20 percent. In 2006, it is planned to spend LVL 665.8 thousand for tourism development from state budget. LVL 5 thousand would be spend on examination of local tourism development and marketing strategy; LVL 7 thousand should be spent to provide the Internet page in 7 more languages; LVL 8 thousand should be spent on research of quality of tourism accommodation places and services; almost LVL 10 thousand is planned for studying the development possibilities for active tourism routes.
Dienas Bizness

Wednesday, the 10th of May, 2006

The court does not declare the state ownership of LMT
The Supreme Court did not declare the State of Latvia ownership of 23 % of LMT (Latvian Mobile Telephone) shares on May 9. The owner of the disputable shares is at the moment the Latvia State Radio and Television Centre, which is a joint-stock company of the state. The Prime Minister Aigars Kalvitis had told earlier that Latvia could regain complete control over Lattelekom, the Latvian fixed telecommunications company, by offering the second co-owner of the enterprise the state owned shares of LMT. The Minister of Economics Aigars Stokenbergs stressed he has never talked about exchange of LMT shares. Another question is if it is possible to sell LMT shares. According to Stokenbergs the given decision of the court does neither improve, nor worsen the situation. The shares are still property of the state. He has planned this week to meet TeliaSonera President in Norway, Denmark and the Baltic countries Kenneth Karlberg.
Neatkariga Rita Avize Latvijai,

Wednesday, the 10th of May, 2006

Hockey fans looking for cheaper accommodation
The expectations of hotels and guesthouses on big flow of tourists despite the high prices for accommodation did not approve. The fact is that hockey fans prefer to spend more money on alcohol than living in such expensive hotels. Several groups of hockey fans have settled in Parnu or Panevezys and visit Riga just for hockey game because it is much more cheaper. Many hockey fans are living in Sigulda where prices on accommodation are much reasonable than in the capital of Latvia, Riga.
Vesti Segodnja

Thursday, the 11th of May, 2006

SAS wants to overtake airBaltic
Scandinavian airline SAS, which is the minority shareholder of airBaltic, most likely will convert the loan allocated to airBaltic into company’s shares to become the majority shareholder of the Latvian leading airline. The Latvian Minister of Transport pointed out that SAS would increase its market share in airBaltic from 47 per cent to 54 percent if the loan was converted. In its turn the head of SAS investor relations, Sture Stolen, said that Latvian government, which is the majority shareholder of airBaltic, should decide to pay loan back in cash or in capital shares. Previously SAS has already expressed a strategic desire to receive the majority of airBaltic.
Dienas Bizness

Thursday, the 11th of May, 2006

Entrepreneurs are far from hockey expectations
World Hockey Championship 2006 has caused disillusion for the majority of entrepreneurs in Riga due to turnover decrease instead of expected profit. Bars and cafes, which are located outside Livu Square not only suffer from lack of fans but have also lost the local visitors who did not want to walk through the crowded Streets in Old Riga. Some cafes have increased the price on bear by 40 santims per 0.5 litre seeing the Finns failing on bear. Riga City Council expects to gain enormous advertising for the city by feeding, drinking and entertaining the hockey teams and the members of the International Ice Hockey Federation during the hockey championship. Riga City Mayor, Aivars Aksenoks, said that LVL 12.4 thousand is allocated for making the banquet in honour of this event. The majority of hotels in Riga have not reached a 100 per cent load as it was expected during the World Hockey Championship 2006. The main reason of such situation is the high prices, which amount to EUR 150-227 per hotel room. However, the Latvian beer business and the business of non-alcoholic drinks is going successfully unlike other business spheres.
Dienas Bizness

Thursday, the 11th of May, 2006

Inflation reached 2.3% in the beginning of 2006
The prices on products and services in Latvia are increasing significantly. In April 2006 the level of inflation was 0.6%, but since the beginning of the year the prices have increased by 2.3%. In the period of 12 months the biggest increase in prices was seen in thermo-power industry (+15.6 per cent), in cafes and restaurant services (+12 per cent) and fuel (+11.7 per cent).
Biznes & Baltija

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