Two new board members Iain Kennedy and Ilze Zoltnere have been elected to join the executive board of Foreign Investors’ Council in Latvia (FICIL) by its members.

Iain Kennedy is the CEO of insurance company Balta. He has over 15 years of experience in insurance, working in Latvia, Poland, Saudi Arabia, Czechia and United Kingdom. Mr. Kennedy has graduated from the Liverpool John Moores University in UK with a degree in business management.

Ilze Zoltnere is the head of Corporate Banking in Luminor bank, responsible for servicing bank’s business clients. Ilze has top level management experience in multiple auto industry companies, in finance, telecommunications and media industry. Ms. Zoltnere has graduated Riga Business School with a MBA degree.

Gunta Jēkabsone, chairperson of FICIL board: “I am glad to welcome the new board members in our team! Their experience will broaden our competences and strengthen our organisation’s capability to make far-sighted and strategic decisions. Our mission is to be the one voice of foreign-owned companies in Latvia, therefore it is important to have a broad range of perspectives in our decision-making process.”

FICIL’s board is led by Gunta Jēkabsone, executive director of Circle-K Latvia. Ints Krasts, board member of SEB Latvia, and Māris Gruzniņš, board member of Schwenk Latvija serve as vice-chairs of the board. Arnis Sauka, professor at SSE Riga, Baiba Apine of PwC as well as Zinta Jansons, partner at Kļaviņš Ellex law firm are also members of FICIL board.

FICIL is a non-governmental organisation, which unites 38 largest foreign-owned companies from different industries, 10 foreign trade chambers, the French Foreign Trade Advisors and Stockholm School of Economics in Riga. FICIL’s mission is to use the experience and knowledge of its members to provide recommendations for public sector to improve Latvia’s business environment and competitiveness in attracting foreign investment.

Since the establishment of FICIL in 1999, a high-level meeting between foreign investors and Latvia’s government takes place each spring to discuss the most important tasks for bettering Latvia’s business environment. This year the High Council meeting took place on May 30-31, where improving access to labour and introducing a new governance model for universities were stressed by FICIL as the most important priorities.