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Welcome new board

Mar 26, 2013 - Mar 21, 2013 from 18:30 till 21:00

AmCham held its 20th Annual General Meeting to review the past year’s activities and elect the Board of Directors. The following candidates were elected to serve two year-terms:

Daiga Auzina-Melalksne, Egbert Boerrigter, Aleksis Karlsons, Ivars Slokenbergs and Liga Smildzina-Bertulsone will continue to serve on the board.

Former Vice President Romans Baumanis and Board member Jorens Raitums stepped down from the Board due to term limits. Romans Baumanis resigned after 5 years of service while Jorens Raitums resigned after 2 years of service.

New officers will be appointed by the Board at the next meeting on April 10.

US Ambassador to Latvia Mark Pekala opened the meeting with a speech, emphasizing the close cooperation between the US Embassy in Riga and AmCham and outlining the future cooperation. He said: "An enduring theme throughout the past two decades has been the excellent relationship between the US Embassy and AmCham. I would like to propose five challenges that AmCham – and we together – can take on this coming year:  IPR enforcement, corporate governance, social responsibility, youth development, and increasing trade and investment. The US Embassy is your partner, and together we will tackle these five goals – and many more."

He added: "Since I arrived in Latvia, I have said many times that the US-Latvian economic relationship is one of my top priorities. AmCham is a key ally in advancing this relationship.  I want to sell more, buy more, and invest more – in Latvia by Americans and in the United States by Latvians. This creates jobs and enhances our prosperity and security. I know we can all expand our networks, create new connections, and chase down more leads.  We’re at the right time in the global economic cycle to be able to do that."

AmCham President Ivars Slokenbergs outlined the Chamber’s accomplishments of the past year and the goals for the next year. Slokenbergs said that with its 20th anniversary, AmCham has made significant changes – introduced new mission and goals based on core values and launched new visual identity including a refreshed logo and enhanced website. According to Slokenbergs, in the days ahead, AmCham will continue to serve as a vibrant forum amongst all its stakeholders to exchange views, network and connect in order to continue striving towards a more prosperous and competitive Latvia open to high value investments and trading relationships.

Eriks Eglitis said: "Microsoft and I personally share the mission and goals of AmCham, and I am honored to be part of its proceedings. ICT is always about change, being with time, on time, even running ahead of time. Simultaneously – it is a balancing act of losing nothing of what has been built good. That is what I would love to bring to AmCham board: another angle, another viewpoint, to develop further great ideas of this remarkable community."

Arnis Kakulis said: "AmCham has always been a very pro-active organization facilitating thought leadership among its membership and as such providing a forum for sharing best practices to the government, the business community, and the citizens of Latvia. I feel that this information exchange and knowledge transfer is essential for the future positive development of this country as a strategic cornerstone to the Baltic Sea Region.  I embrace the challenge to assist AmCham and its members to share their insights and experiences to continually improve the development and business climate of Latvia."

Matiss Kukainis said: "I am looking to share my knowledge, experience and contacts with other members of AmCham Latvia in order to foster mutual beneficial relationships."

Janis Meija said: "I will work to continue the Chamber’s tradition of offering high quality services to its members, and in promoting transparency and good governance to improve the business climate in Latvia."

The Board of the American Chamber of Commerce in Latvia for 2013-2014 consists of:

  • Daiga Auzina-Melalksne, Chairman of the Management Board of NASDAQ OMX Riga
  • Ebgert Boerrigter, Director of Cytec Latvia
  • Eriks Eglitis, Country Manager of Microsoft Latvia
  • Aleksis Karlsons, CEO of Hotel Bergs  A&E Consulting                                                                  
  • Arnis Kakulis, Director of AECOM                         
  • Matiss Kukainis, Partner of Spigulis, Kukainis & Azanda                              
  • Janis Meija, Attorney of Ernst & Young Baltic                  
  • Ivars Slokenbergs, Associate at LAWIN and President of AmCham Latvia           
  • Liga Smildzina-Bertulsone, Executive Director of AmCham Latvia     

AmCham is committed to strengthening trade and investment relations and nurturing partnerships and friendship between the US and Latvia, and serving as a hub of networking and thought leadership for its members and partners as well as for the local and international business community in Latvia. In addition, AmCham is committed to building a better business and investment climate in Latvia. The goals and actions of the Chamber are grounded in its core values of integrity, responsibility, cooperation and excellence.

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AmCham and PwC share the same values and targets to achieve socially.

Zlata Elksnina-Zascirinska, Country Managing Partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers

We are very pleased to be part of AmCham and are looking forward to driving innovation forward in Latvia.

Mikko Fernström, General Manager, Biogen Latvia