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Mid-life crisis ahead for Lithuania

Apr 18, 2014
From wire reports, VILNIUS

Very soon Lithuania will be commemorating the 20th anniversary of its accession to the European Union, reports ELTA.

“The progress achieved by the country is obvious, still Lithuania should not rest on its laurels, one of the major objectives of the next decade of EU membership is transparent and efficient distribution of financial support for 2014-2020,” says Chief Economist at Swedbank Nerijus Maciulis.

"Lithuania's economy is entering a mid-life crisis: easy sources of growth are already exploited, demographic trends will be increasingly unfavorable, and, therefore, the economy in the coming decade will slow by almost half. To achieve growth solely by importing new technologies will be difficult; increasingly more domestic creative potential will be needed. To achieve this it is necessary to improve the functionality of the education system and business environment that would help reduce structural unemployment and exclusion," said Maciulis in a statement.

According to the economist, the greatest achievement of the first decades of EU membership was the growth in the economy and the effectiveness of the private sector. Yet it seems that this won’t be enough in the coming decade. Still, the country may achieve progress in another dimension: in a focus of attention on the effectiveness of the public sector and reduction of social and regional exclusion.

Maciulis underlines that from the beginning of the next decade, EU financial assistance will substantially decrease, and therefore, it is necessary to distribute the last 44 billion litas (12.7 billion euros) allocated to Lithuania for 2014-2020 in as much a transparent and effective way as possible.

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