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Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevičius meets with Vice President of the European Commission Valdis Dombrovskis

Date

2015 01 14

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Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevičius met with Valdis Dombrovskis, Vice-President of the European Commission responsible for the euro and the social dialogue to discuss the introduction of the euro in Lithuania, the EC President’s proposed investment plan for Europe and economic growth prospects of the European Union.

The Prime Minister said that the introduction of the euro in the country was going smoothly and according to plan. The head of Government pointed out that the number of the supporters of the new currency has been growing, as confirmed by the recent polls (from 41 per cent last spring to 63 per cent now).

“People start appreciating the benefits of the euro: reinforced economic and financial security, improved Lithuania’s image as a credible partner, more possibilities for foreign investment, e country’s closer participation in EU decision-making”, says the Prime Minister.

The Vice-President of the European Commission V. Dombrovskis congratulated Lithuania on successfully completing all procedures for the adoption of the euro and on becoming a full-fledged Eurozone member.

As regards the EC President’s investment plan for Europe, which provides for the establishment of the Strategic Investment Fund to be allocated 21 billion euros from the European Investment Bank and the EU budget with a view to accruing 315 billion euros in investments in 2015-2017, the Lithuanian Government has pointed out the need for ensuring the implementation of EU’s priority objectives.

“The proposal can have a positive impact on the economic growth and job creation in Europe, but it is very important to ensure that the Investment Fund does not compromise the original objectives of the EU budget programmes nor their implementation”, said the Prime Minister.

On the EU,s economic growth prospects, the Prime Minister identified three priorities: a coordinated promotion of investments, the renewed commitment of EU Member States to carry out structural reforms and ensure fiscal responsibility. According to the Prime Minister, these three factors will be the main drivers of economic growth and job creation in Europe.

The interlocutors also discussed the crisis in Ukraine, sanctions against Russia, and the Eastern Partnership.