Kirkilas keeps inflation plan under wraps

  • 2007-10-17
  • From
VILNIUS -- The Lithuanian government has a detailed plan to tackle rising inflation, but is still refusing to reveal the content publically.

Speaking to journalists Oct. 17 following a governmental meeting on the subject, Prime Minister Gediminas Kirkilas said that the current annual inflation level of 7 percent was expected and should not be over-dramatized.

"The Lithuanian situation is under control. Lithuania has the lowest inflation among the Baltic states," said Kirkilas, adding that now "is not the time to loosen up."

Board chairman of the central Bank of Lithuania, Reinoldijus Sarkinas, who was also present at the meeting, said the situation was not "dramatic," at the same time noting that the 7-percent inflation was "high."

He stated that the loan conditions and banking system in Lithuania were "truly very good" in spite of the growing inflation.

"Just 0.85 percent of loans are bad, which is really a very low level. There is no increase so far," said Sarkinas.

Monthly inflation was 1.4 percent in September, while average annual inflation amounted to 4.9 percent and annual inflation (compared year-on-year) stood at 7.1 percent.

The government forecasts that the average monthly inflation will amount to 5.2 percent in the end of the year, while financial analysts forecast the annual level at 7-8 percent.