EC - Latvia: extracts from the joint press briefing by Joaquin ALMUNIA, European Commissioner for Economic and Monetary Affairs and Valdis DOMBROVSKIS, Prime Minister of Latvia
Première transmission: 10/06/2009
Brussels, Belgium - EC/Berlaymont
Fin de production: 10/06/2009
Following bilateral talks with Prime Minister Valdis Dombrovskis today in Brussels, Joaquin Almunia, Member of the EC in charge of Economic and Monetary Affairs, said that clear commitments were expected by the Latvian government and political forces to continue painful economic adjustments in order to receive financial support from the European Union and other international bodies.
The Commission is confident that the Latvian authorities will be able to make the required budget cuts of 500 million lats in 2009 and 2010. There is no alternative, Joaquin Almunia told journalists.
Dombrovskis said his country is concentrating on a medium-term strategy for the coming years in order to allow his country to join the eurozone.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
||Joint arrival of Valdis Dombrovskis, Latvian Prime Minister, and of Joaquín Almunia, Member of the EC in charge of Economic and Monetary Affairs - roundtable (3 shots)
||General view of the speakers at the joint press briefing
||SOUNDBITE by Valdis Dombrovskis (in ENGLISH): We yesterday in the government adopted the decision to do another fiscal correction of 500 millions Lats for 2009 in order to ensure that we continue to receive international financing. As well we are concentrating on a medium-term strategy for the coming years to have a strategy on how do we go down with the budget deficit not to exceed 3% of GDP which corresponds to joining the eurozone.
||SOUNDBITE by Joaquín Almunia (in ENGLISH): there is a political agreement to adjust for an amount of 500 million lats the budget for this year. I hope that this will be voted by the parliament next week. And as I have told the Prime Minister, we consider that on top of this there is also a need for a clear commitment by the Latvian government and by the Latvian political forces to continue these adjustments toward the objective of fulfilling the conditions for joining the euro. This requires in 2010 clear commitments also for an equivalent amount of 500 million lats. This is the message that we have conveyed to the Latvian Prime Minister. We continue encouraging them to adopt measures that are difficult but are needed for the stability of the Latvian economy and for keeping the perspective of joining the euro as an anchor for the consolidation of the stability. We are cooperating with the Latvian authorities. We are confident that they will be able to fulfil all these difficult commitments. At the same time, we are convinced that there is no alternative. All other possible alternatives are more painful and worst for the Latvian citizens, for the Latvian economy and also for the EU.
||Cutaway of press
||Handshake and departure