Grindex, Latvia's largest pharmaceutical company, announced it would build a new storage facility and production plant that will manufacture equipment for injections, with a capacity of 120 million ampules per year. "Implementation of these projects will allow the company to expand the scale of its operations and to achieve the set targets in accordance with the vision of developing a pharmaceutical company of a European level," said Chairman Valdis Jakobsons. Director Janis Romanovskis said that the projects would be "quite costly," but the company had free resources, including 12 million lats (17 million euros) after the latest share issue.
Norma, Estonia's maker of automotive safety equipment, asked the Labor Inspector's permission for the collective termination of employment contracts with 53 employees. Norma explained it was making the move due to a decrease in output and higher production efficiency based on new technology. Norma employs approximately 1,000 people.
Kraft Foods Norge announced it planned to shift part of its manufacturing to Lithuania, with Kaunas-based Kraft Foods Lietuva to launch production of chocolate bars for the Norwegian subsidiary in 2006. The shift would involve less competitive products, including chocolate bars Japp, Peanottkubbe and Mandelstag, Lise Bergan, Kraft Foods Norge information director told the NTB news agency. "The decision of Norway's company is the best evidence that Kraft Foods Lietuva is evolving into the center of chocolate bar production," said Rasa Bagdoniene, Kraft Foods Lietuva director for public relations in the Baltic countries.
Indrek Neivelt, former chairman of the management board of Hansabank, became chairman of the supervisory board of Bank Sankt-Peterburg, which is co-owned by Estonian businessman Hillar Teder and who recommended Neivelt, the Eesti Paevaleht daily reported. "I was present when the bank's majority owner Alexander Savelyev got acquainted with Neivelt," Teder told the newspaper. "I was left with the impression that Savelyev particularly needed the know-how that Indrek can offer," he said. The paper wrote that the bank has good relations with regional governor Valentina Matviyenko. During her election campaign, Matviyenko's election headquarters were situated at the bank's head office. Bank Sankt-Peterburg is not one of Russia's biggest banks. With assets standing at 21.7 billion rubles and owner's equity of 2.2 billion rubles, the bank ranks respectively 42nd and 68th on the Russian banking market.