The transatlantic trade and investment partnership contract (TTIP) would open up markets, reduce bureaucracy and costs and increase competition which would bring benefits to the Lithuanian consumers, according to political scientist Ramūnas Vilpišauskas.
However, he said it was unclear whether Lithuanian companies could withstand the competition that the agreement would bring.
It is estimated that with such a treaty in force the European economy would add 0.5% to the EU’s growth rates annually for about a decade, and the average family would gain €500 per year, according to Vilpišauskas, the head of the International Relations and Political Science Institute.
“Lithuania is an exporting country. Only exports can continue to strengthen Lithuania’s economic and social capacity and economic growth in the future. Some of our goods face high tariffs and a number of non-tariff barriers – regulatory, standard harmonization, and prolonged certification. The agreement would greatly ease the situation,” said Gintaras Morkis, Lithuanian Confederation of Industrialists chief representative to international organizations.
“Negotiators believe that access to the US market for small and medium-sized businesses would be much easier. And competition … Of course, there are more players, but America is not a country of cheap goods. It is a market economy country, so if we can withstand pressures from non-market economy countries, here, I think it certainly will not be a problem,” said Morkis.
Vilpišauskas noted that public opinion polls show that Lithuania is the largest supporter of the TTIP among the EU countries.