Tuesday, June 25, Vilnius - President Dalia Grybauskaitė met with the Prime Minister of Norway, Jens Stoltenberg. The President and Norway's Prime Minister discussed possibilities to import Norwegian gas and electricity to Lithuania and the EU-Norway cooperation during Lithuanian Presidency of the Council of the European Union.
"Norway is an important partner of the Baltic region and NATO which has always helped Lithuania in seeking strategic goals. At present Norway contributes to ensuring our energy self-dependence," the President said.
According to the President, the launching of the liquefied natural gas terminal (LNG) in Klaipėda in 2014, a special ship for the terminal being constructed by the Norwegian company Hoegh LNG, will secure a safe alternative gas supply at competitive prices. Norway - one of the world's largest liquefied gas exporters - will also have an option to supply gas to the Klaipėda LNG terminal.
Having joined the Nordic electricity exchange Nord Pool Spot, Lithuania today is already buying electricity from Norwegian hydroelectric power plants as it is one of the cheapest in the world. After building Lithuania-Sweden power interconnection, imports of Scandinavian electricity could account for 50 % of Lithuania's overall demand for electric power, with up to 40 % of electricity generated in Norway.
The President and the Prime Minister also discussed cooperation between the European Union and Norway during Lithuania's EU Presidency. The President highlighted Norway's very close ties with the European Union - the country belongs to the European Economic Area (EEA) and actively participates in the EU internal market.
Completed and effectively functioning EU internal market, the President said, is crucial for ensuring Europe's economic growth and competitiveness - an underlying priority on Lithuanian presidency agenda.
President Dalia Grybauskaitė also thanked for Norway's support to Lithuania's OECD membership aspirations. It was during Norwegian Presidency that Lithuania was invited to open talks on its membership in this organization. Norway also backs Lithuania's bid for a non-permanent seat on the UN Security Council in 2014-2015.
Among the issues featured at the meeting were prospects of bilateral cooperation and Lithuanian-Norwegian business relations. Norway is Lithuania's fifth largest foreign investor. Around 200 Norwegian companies operate in Lithuania, as well as Norwegian-Lithuanian Chamber of Commerce.
Norway's financial support is important for Lithuania. In the period 2009-2014, 42 million euros were allocated to our country under the Norwegian Financial Mechanism for financing projects in the spheres of health protection, child care, cultural heritage and regional policy. Liubavas Manor, restored using these funds, has been recognized as an example of Europe's cultural heritage and honoured with international Europa Nostra Award.
Last updated 2013.06.25 15:59Back