Finance Minister downplays massive drop in FDI

  • 2010-08-13
  • Oskars Magone

The finance minister said the 90% drop in FDI should be viewed in context.

VILNIUS -- Lithuanian Finance Minister and acting Prime Minister Ingrida Simonyte has sought to downplay recently released data indicating that foreign direct investment in the country has suffered a staggering drop over the past year.

On 11 August Lithuania’s Central Bank announced that the FDI in the first half of 2010 dropped almost by 89.3 percent year-on-year.

"The worst thing is that a bare figure often becomes a piece of news in Lithuania, but not arguments explaining it," she said in an interview with Ziniu radijas on Aug. 12.

"One should have in mind that many other factors, namely that a significant investment was made at this very same time last year. The Polish group PKN Orlen purchased a considerable stake in the refinery from the government, which created a kind of hump in the investment flow," she said.

The minister has instead recently focussed on the improved GDP outlook for the year, driven by an increase in exports. 

"Based on a detailed analysis of export data, we see clear signs of a vigorous and rapid recovery of exports and if this trend continues we will see double-digit growth in 2010," she said in a press release.