Grybauskaite calls on parliamentarians to back budget

  • 2009-12-09
  • Oskars Magone

The Lithuanian president is keen on passing the budget without undue political maneuvering (photo courtesy of the office of the president)

VILNIUS - Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite has called on lawmakers to pass the country's 2010 budget in an effort to avoid being forced to take a loan from international lenders.

The president told journalists that the Lithuanian parliament (Seimas) to take "political responsibility" by passing the budget.

"I call upon both the government and the opposition to take all political responsibility for Lithuania to have next year's budget," she said.

Grybauskaite gave her support to the budget by saying that it would help the country avoid a crisis as deep as the country's northern neighbor, Latvia, is experiencing.

"All political forces in Lithuania are equally responsible for Lithuania‘s lack of readiness in this recession, for a shortage of reserves and resources. This is why I am addressing everyone to accept responsibility. Lithuania needs a state budget next year, so we don‘t end up repeating the mistakes of our neighbours . . . Lithuania can still manage its problems on its own."

"Next year's budget means that there will be no need (to address the IMF), if parliament approves it."

Lithuania plans to borrow more than 6 billion litas from international markets, but is desperate to avoid taking an even larger loan from the IMF and EU.

The president also praised the way the ruling coalition has handled the stabalization of public finances.