China softening stance toward Lithuanian companies – industrialists' rep

  • 2023-01-18
  • BNS/TBT Staff

VILNIUS – China's stance towards Lithuanian companies has been softening for some time now, Vidmantas Janulevicius, president of the Lithuanian Confederation of Industrialists (LPK), said on Wednesday, adding that exports of key goods have not yet resumed, but a dialogue is starting. 

His comment comes after Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda has said recently that China is changing its stance after imposing restrictions on imports from Lithuania.  

"There has been lately a certain softening toward the export of Lithuanian goods to China is concerned," Janulevicius told BNS.  

"As to imports from China, there has certainly been a softening in recent months. I'd say that we feel that some Lithuanian companies can import much more components," he said.

Speaking about Lithuania's exports to China, Janulevicius said that talks have started, but actual exports have not yet resumed.

"Food product and beverage exports from Lithuania to China have not yet begun, but some talks are getting underway with importers who used to import Lithuanian beverages and food," the LPK president said. 

"Only specific electronic tools and equipment, and some lasers are going to China now. But the key goods, which amounted to almost 350 million euros (...), have not really moved yet," he added. 

Janulevicius said he expects relations with China to be restored in the future. 

Nauseda said after his meeting with WTO Director-General Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala in Davos on Tuesday that China was changing its position.  

In 2021, Lithuania allowed Taipei to open its representative office in Vilnius with the word "Taiwanese" in its name. 

In response, Beijing downgraded diplomatic ties with Vilnius and blocked Lithuanian exports and imports. This led the European Union to take the matter to the WTO early last year.