Lithuania’s economy ‘four years behind Estonia’ – Danske Bank

DELFI / Mindaugas Ažušilis

In Grajauskas’ words, Lithuanian businesses adapted well to the Russian embargo, which gives hope for the fastest growth of exports in the Baltic region this year.

“In light of growing salaries, decrease of unemployment and shortage of labour force in our country, we will rapidly reach the situation of today’s Estonia in three to four years. Our salaries will come closer to those of Estonia, but our competition is not with Estonia but other low-cost countries, such as Bulgaria and Romania,” Grajauskas, senior economist for the Baltic States, told a Vilnius news conference on Wednesday.

“We can state with certainty that the Lithuanian business adapted well to the decline in Russia. This gives hope for rather good growth of exports this year. We forecast a 3.2% increase in Lithuania, which will be the steepest indicator in the whole of the Baltic region. Lithuania’s exports are in a sustainable situation,” said Grajauskas.

In his words, the expansion of Lithuania’s exports will mainly focus on Western Europe and the United States in the coming two years.

In late January, Danske Bank forecast that Lithuanian exports should grow 3.2% this year, increasing by up to 3.9% in 2017.

According to the forecast, the country’s economy will grow 2.8% in 2016 and 3.3% in 2017. The Latvian economy is expected to grow 2.9% and 3.1%, respectively, and the Estonian 2.2% and 2.5%, respectively.

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