Candidates nominated for the vacant positions on the Council of Latvijas Banka

  • 2020-02-26
  • LB/TBT Staff

Proceeding with implementing changes at Latvijas Banka, inter alia introducing a more effective management model, Mārtiņš Kazāks, Governor of Latvijas Banka, has nominated candidates for the vacant positions on the Council of Latvijas Banka.

21 February, Mārtiņš Kazāks presented an official letter to Ināra Mūrniece, Speaker of the Saeima (Parliament) of the Republic of Latvia, requesting the Saeima to appoint Māris Kālis and Zita Zariņa to the positions of Deputy Governor and Member of the Council of Latvijas Banka respectively.

The position of a Member of the Council of Latvijas Banka became vacant when the Saeima appointed Mārtiņš Kazāks Governor of Latvijas Banka, whereas the term of office of Zoja Razmusa, the current Deputy Governor of Latvijas Banka, will expire on 12 March 2020.

Māris Kālis, nominated for the position of Deputy Governor of Latvijas Banka, is currently the Chairman of the Board of Latvijas Banka, the body in charge of the bank's daily operation. Along with his duties as the Chairman of the Board of Latvijas Banka, Māris Kālis chairs the Investment Committee of Latvijas Banka and coordinates the implementation of any major development projects at Latvijas Banka.

Prior to his employment with Latvijas Banka, he worked with the international auditing and business advisory firm Arthur Andersen. After joining Latvijas Banka team, he has played a significant role in both the development of  Latvijas Banka and successful implementation of national and international projects. Māris Kālis' professional experience has involved close cooperation with the European Central Bank, including participation in addressing issues of the Governing Council and General Council of the ECB, as well as work in international teams of experts, representing the International Monetary Fund in several technical assistance programmes in Europe. During his career with Latvijas Banka, Māris Kālis delivered lectures at the Faculty of Economics and Management (now renamed the Faculty of Business, Management and Economics) of the University of Latvia and contributed to the work of the Latvian Association of Certified Auditors.

Zita Zariņa, nominated for the position of Member of the Council of Latvijas Banka, is currently a member of the Council of the State Audit Office.

Mārtiņš Kazāks points out that Zita Zariņa's work experience in auditing and her professional qualifications and personal features will strengthen the management team of Latvijas Banka during the times of change so important for the central bank and the overall financial sector of Latvia. Zita Zariņa can provide a significant contribution to the restructuring of Latvijas Banka, inter alia also in relation to the potential incorporation of the Financial and Capital Market Commission (FCMC) in Latvijas Banka.

In the next few weeks, discussions on the above candidates will be held at the Saeima parliamentary groups and the Budget and Finance (Taxation) Committee in charge of this issue. Governor Mārtiņš Kazāks will take part in the discussions and provide arguments supporting his choice.

"In the last few months, we have been working hard implementing changes at Latvijas Banka. It is essential to strengthen the management team of Latvijas Banka, given the challenges ahead in the near future, i.e. changes in the management model; the potential incorporation of the FCMC in the central bank; the tasks of Latvijas Banka in the process of implementing changes in the financial sector, inter alia the role of Latvijas Banka in the assessment process of Latvia's financial sector implemented by the International Monetary Fund etc. In my opinion, Māris Kālis and Zita Zariņa are the right persons who can provide significant contribution to the above," says Mārtiņš Kazāks.

According to the Law on Latvijas Banka, the Council of Latvijas Banka consists of six persons: the Governor, the Deputy Governor and four members of the Council. Currently the Council of Latvijas Banka consists of five persons (for further information, see https://www.bank.lv/en/about-us/structure).