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Rauls Vēliņš, General Manager, Roche Latvija
At the end of May (May 30-31), the Foreign Investors Council in Latvia (FICIL) and the Government of Latvia met for the 23rd time at the High Council meeting to discuss the needed improvements of the investment climate in Latvia. During the meeting, Julia Sundberg, the Chairperson of the FICIL Board, presented FICIL's vision of the necessary steps towards improving the business climate in Latvia. Main topics included availability and quality of work force, governance in the education and transport sector, fight against economic and financial crime as well as efficiency of the court system. This year, FICIL has published and submitted position papers in seven policy fields as well as the view on the Macroeconomic policy issues to the Government of Latvia. At the end of the meeting, FICIL Honorary Chairperson, Mrs. Charlotte Norrby, and the Prime Minister, Mr. Arturs Krišjānis Kariņš, signed a bilateral communiqué to demonstrate the willingness to continue the cooperation.
The video of the event is available below:
FICIL also held a public discussion with experts and state officials on 30 May at the SSE Riga, covering two significant areas that contribute to sustainable economic growth. As 2019 marks FICIL's 20th anniversary, the discussion looked back on the already achieved while placing a strong focus on how the decisions made today would affect the investment climate of Latvia in the future. The first panel discussion "Staffing a Smart Nation" focused on the future of Latvia's education system and labour force, while "Laying the Tracks Ahead for Latvia" focused on the future of Latvia's transport sector. Full video recording available on FICIL's youtube channel.
The key theme for the 23rd High Council was "Tomorrow is the Consequence of Now". The sub-themes covered specific issues where FICIL sees the need for improving business environment and included topics relating to labour availability and quality, good governance issues within the education and transport sector, effectiveness of the public sector, including digitalisation factor, rule of law and combating economic and financial crimes as well as the developments in the energy sector.
The High Council is a two-day event. FICIL High Council 2019 kicked off on the 30th of May with an internal meeting. The morning discussion focused on the stability of the financial sector with investors having a chance to ask questions directly to distinguished panelists:
The afternoon is dedicated to a public panel discussion that in 2019 placed focus on the quality of higher education and link to the availability of work force, as well as the current and future challenges the investors in the transport sector are facing.
The discussion is followed by a reception in the evening. The second day is dedicated to the meeting with the Prime Minister and the Cabinet of Ministers.
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Mantautas Paskevicius, Country Manager of Strategic Staffing Solutions International