Latvia, Port, Transport, USA

International Internet Magazine. Baltic States news & analytics Friday, 18.09.2020, 15:54

Karins establishes working group tasked to ensure continuous operation of the Freeport of Ventspils

BC, Riga, 12.12.2019.Print version
Prime Minister Krisjanis Karins (New Unity) on Thursday ordered the creation of a task force led by Minister of Transport Talis Linkaits (New Conservative Party) to ensure the continued operation of the Freeport of Ventspils, the prime minister's office told LETA.

The order states that the task force is being set up to promote effective coordination and to ensure the continued operation of the Freeport of Ventspils and reduce the risk of corruption, thereby reducing the impact of US sanctions on Latvia's transit system and the economy at large.

The task force will be headed by Linkaits, and will also be made up of Finance Minister Janis Reirs (New Unity), Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevics (New Unity), Justice Minister Janis Bordans (New Conservative Party), Economy Minister Ralfs Nemiro (KPV LV), Environmental Protection and Regional Development Minister Juris Puce (For Development), as well as Minister of Agriculture Kaspars Gerhards.

Also working on the task force will be Bank of Latvia President Martins Kazaks, the chairwoman of the Financial Capital and Market Commission Santa Purgaile, the head of the State Treasury Kaspars Abolins, as well as the head of the prime minister's bureau Janis Patmalnieks.

As reported, the US Department of the Treasury's Office of Foreign Asset Control (OFAC) on December 9 imposed sanctions on a number of natural and legal persons in Europe, Asia and Latin America, including on Latvia's Ventspils mayor Aivars Lembergs, based on the so-called Magnitsky act.

OFAC has listed four organizations that belong to or are controlled by Lembergs - Vetspils Freeport Administration, Ventspils Development Agency, Business Development Agency, and the Latvian Transport Business Association.

To deal with Lembergs' influence in the Freeport of Ventspils, the government on Wednesday decided to take over the ports of Ventspils and Riga. 

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