In Brief - 2003-06-21

  • 2003-06-21
Iraqi money starts rolling in
Montuotojas, Lithuania's largest company engaged in building steel and concrete structures, has won a major order in Iraq, making it the first Lithuanian firm to be invited to take part in the rebuilding of the war-ravaged country, the daily Lietuvos Rytas reported on June 9.
At least 100 Montuotojas staff are expected to be employed in the construction of 90 oil tanks in Iraq.
A company official declined to disclose the value of the order, saying everything would depend "on guarantees and other terms."
According to Lietuvos Rytas, a similar oil tank costs $1 million.
Montuotojas, based in Vilnius, reported a turnover of 50.1 million litas (14.5 million euros) for 2002, a 17 percent increase over the previous year, and a net profit of 1.5 million litas. (Baltic News Service)

Mega-revenues for Latvia's Mego
Mego, one of the largest grocery chains in Latvia, generated sales of 21 million lats (31.8 million euros) in the first five months of 2003, up by 35 percent over the same period last year, said a top Mego official.
The result "affirms that the target set for 2003 to generate aggregate sales of 56 million lats will not just be met but will even be exceeded," said the company official, adding that no less than eight new Mego stores will be launched before the end of the year, most of them outside Riga.
Mego currently owns 33 stores in Latvia, of which 12 are located outside Riga.
Last year Mego had a profit of 558,000 lats, a fourfold increase over 2001, on net sales of 33.6 million lats, up 85 percent year-on-year. (BNS)

Estonians not shy about flying
Estonian Air carried 34,540 passengers on its nine regular routes in May, a 29 percent increase over the same month in 2002, the airline reported on June 6.
Intensity was biggest on the Tallinn-Copenhagen route, which had 12,780 passengers. The airline makes three daily flights to Copenhagen on workdays and two on Saturdays and Sundays.
The load factor during the month was highest on the Tallinn-Hamburg route, where it reached 91 percent, the airline said.
Estonian Air had adopted a new fare system on the Hamburg route starting from February this year, according to which the price of a one-way ticket starts from 700 kroons (45 euros), plus airport fees.
Due to increased demand Estonian Air will make two extra flights to Hamburg each week between June 17 and Sept. 11, which means that the airline will be flying to Hamburg daily. (BNS)

Resort town gets new cannery
A new modern fish cannery with a cold storage capacity for 600 tons of raw fish has started operating in Palanga, the national daily newspaper Lietuvos Rytas reported on June 10.
Baltijos Delikatesai, the new cannery, currently produces 20,000 cans of fish per day, though output is expected to double later. The launch of a second production line should increase monthly output to some 2 million cans.
The industrial group Baltic Atlant completed the establishment of a full fish production cycle -- from raw material to finished product -- by the opening of the new cannery in Palanga. According to the Klaipeda-based daily paper Vakaru Ekspresas, total investments in the new canned fish production facility reached around 10 million litas (2.9 million euros). (BNS)

New trademark for Latvian textile
Latvian knitwear producer Ogre said that it intended to start making products for the Latvian and Baltic markets under a new trademark, OT, that it intends to patent soon.
A company spokesman said the trademark would initially be used for four clothing lines - OT Collection, OT Casual, OT Classic and OT Exclusive - but other brands could be developed later.
With the new trademark Ogre is hoping to expand on the Latvian and Baltic markers. For this purpose a new subsidiary, OT Stils, will be established to organize a retail chain and work with contracts.
In recent years Ogre has neglected the Latvian market but intends to change the situation, said the spokesman.
Ogre shareholders in May supported the restructuring plan, calling for organization of three subsidiaries. Each subsidiary will have its own budget, and the company hopes the arrangement will create better incentives for the staff to work harder and improve quality. (BNS)

Accusation at Estonian metal maker
A retired midlevel manager at the Galvex metal plant is accusing the majority owner of the disappearance of 2,000 tons of steel sheet from the Maardu plant, the daily Aripaev reported.
The manager, who had been forced to leave in connection with the alleged theft, said that one of the plant's owners, Daniel Bain, and not the staff were to blame for the merchandise having gone missing.
"Rolls of metal sheet arrived at the plant weighing less than shown on the labels," the former manager, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told Aripaev. The source said the reason behind the problem was that the material delivered to the plant had not been weighed.
Construction of the plant and raw material purchases were financed by Germany's HypoVereinsbank.
Daniel Bain would not offer any comment or name the possible culprits, saying the matter was being dealt with by Estonian law enforcement authorities. (BNS)