LV Finance Min claims his English is "best in country"

  • 2009-01-19
  • TBT staff in cooperation with BNS

RIGA - Latvian Finance Minister Atis Slakteris has told reporters thathe believes his English skills are among the most valuable in Latvia.His basis for this being that he secured a 7.5 billion euro loan from the IMF,World Bank and other organizations.

"I got 7.5 billion euros, I assume this is one of the most valuableEnglish languages in Latvia," said Slakteris in an interview with Latvianpublic radio on Jan. 19.

He said that on Jan. 20 he will head to the EU finance ministers meeting inBrussels without an interpreter, despite the fact that most ministers speak intheir own language and have translators.

Slakteris' ill-fated English language Bloomberg interview has been thesubject of much criticism and humor throughout the nation and Europe, despitethe ministers success in helping the Baltic State with the 7.5 billion euroloan.