International Internet Magazine. Baltic States news & analytics
Wednesday, 31.08.2016, 19:02
Swedbank on Monday lowered Estonia's economic growth forecast by 0.5 percentage points to 1.5%, while next year's forecast was left unchanged, reports LETA/BNS.
The differences abound both in the ways the three Baltic States re-established their independence and pursued courses in socio-economic development. It seems that at a time when most global states are “blocking” to make life easier, the Baltic States need a “common course”, which our magazine has advocated for long…
The Latvians who live and work in foreign countries provide around EUR 500 million a year to the Latvian economy, Peteris Elferts, the Foreign Ministry's Ambassador-at-Large for diaspora, said on public radio Wednesday, cites LETA.
In the labour market, a lull has set in: there are practically no changes in either unemployment or employment. In the second quarter, the percentage of jobseekers among the economically active population (9.5%) was slightly (by 0.3 pp.) smaller than a year ago, whereas the number of the employed increased only symbolically year-on-year (by 0.3 th.). This confirms our projections that unemployment will continue to decrease ever slower with time (the cyclical component has been close to zero for three subsequent years, and, the lower the structural component is, the more difficult to reduce it further on). The impact of the demand side on inflation is thus not significant and inflation remains low. The impact of the drop in working age population on employment is thus far being compensated by an increase in the participation level.
According to Statistics Estonia, in July 2016, the producer price index of industrial output changed by -0.3% compared to June 2016 and by -1.0% compared to July 2015.
The Commission has adopted a new set of ecological criteria under the EU Ecolabel scheme for computers (personal, notebook and tablet computers), furniture and footwear. Manufacturers wishing to benefit from the EU Ecolabel have to comply with strict requirements that focus on the environmental performance of the product, product safety and social aspects.
There is a striking paradox in Washington's policy on European natural gas markets. US diplomats are undertaking tireless efforts to prevent Russia constructing new export pipelines, arguing these massive projects will deprive Ukraine of billions of dollars in annual revenue from transit fees, which could wreck the struggling country's economy. At the same time the United States continues to preach the mantra of energy efficiency and supply diversification, both of which will help reduce reliance on Russian gas in Eastern Europe. Washington wants to help end Ukraine's dependence on Russian gas, yet it is fighting to keep Kiev dependent on Russian gas income. This is not only contradictory, but it is the wrong way to go about helping Ukraine and the wrong way to advance European energy security and integration in the long run.