Wednesday, April 4, Washington, D.C. – President Dalia Grybauskaitė opened the Baltic-U.S. Business Forum during her official visit to the United States. The opening ceremony was also attended by President Raimonds Vējonis of Latvia, President Kersti Kaljulaid of Estonia and U. S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross.
The President’s visit to the United States opens possibilities for new business contacts between Lithuanian and American businesses at the highest level. The Business Forum was attended by a record number of 400 participants including representatives from American companies, U.S. Administration as well as eighteen Lithuanian companies that make Lithuania’s name known in the areas of high technologies, lasers, defense and life sciences. Lithuanian business delegation was the largest among the Baltic states.
In her welcome address, the President underscored that Lithuania and U.S. enjoyed a bond of intense friendship and cooperation not only in the area of security but in business and economy as well. Dalia Grybauskaitė invited companies of both countries to be more dynamic in developing business relations in defense, innovations, energy and other sectors.
American companies pick out Lithuania more and more often and this is demonstrated by increasing trade turnover between the two countries, which has reached almost 1.8 billion euros by now. Lithuania’s export to the U.S. is also on the rise – it grew by 18 percent last year alone. American defense industry takes a special interest in Lithuanian made products. American companies highly value Lithuanian high technologies as one tenth of their export is destined namely for the United States.
The number of American investors in Lithuania is also on the rise. During the last seven years, the scope of investment doubled while American investments in Lithuania grew by 50 billion U.S. dollars in 2017. U.S. business giants, such as Nasdaq, Uber and Thermo Fisher, operate in Lithuania while Lithuanian based American company Western Union has the largest office outside the U.S. which employs 2000 people who communicate in as many as 40 languages.
According to Dalia Grybauskaitė, it is not accidental that Lithuania attracts the attention of investors more and more often. In the World Bank‘s Doing Business 2018 report, Lithuania ranks among the first twenty states out of 190 for the ease of doing business while our region has become a synonym of dynamics and growth in the entire Europe.
The President stated that increasing cooperation between Lithuania and the U.S. was demonstrated by the memorandum, signed between Lithuania’s Klaipėdos Nafta and the U.S. company Freeport LNG before the opening of the Baltic-U.S. Business Forum in Washington, D.C. This memorandum on cooperation will open yet another possibility for gas supply to Lithuania and will create more favorable conditions for increasing U.S. gas export to Europe while reducing dependence on Russia.
The Baltic-U.S. Business Forum also saw a discussion among President Dalia Grybauskaitė of Lithuania, President Raimonds Vējonis of Latvia and President Kersti Kaljulaid of Estonia.
In the Baltic-U.S. Business Forum, Lithuania was represented by laser producer Brolis Semiconductors, IT companies Elsis and NRD CS, life science company Vittamed, representatives of Kaunas and Klaipėda free economic zones and other companies.
Dalia Grybauskaitė began her visit to the United States with the meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump.
Last updated 2018.04.04 09:33Back