There are many different questions on peoples minds at the moment, we hope your family, friends and colleagues are safe during these turbulent times in the region. Although we usually use the newsletter to communicate regarding FICIL activities (this information is still included below), however, we would like to draw your attention to the current events taking place. FICIL has asked its members to answer a questionnaire regarding the impact of the current crisis on business community. This information will allow us to compile information from investors to better inform the public sector if need be.

Click here to access the questionnaire.

In addition, Ministry of Defence and Ministry of Economics has asked for support from companies that can provide assistance or donate necessary items to Ukrainians to reach out until 28th of February 15:00. The items required are: a) medical supplies; b) non-perishable food; c) diesel fuel. In case your company can help, please contact FICIL Office (ficil@ficil.lv or +371 24992483). We will put you in touch with the necessary representatives.

You will find more information on FICIL activities below.

FICIL Annual General Meeting (AGM)

On 17 February, FICIL held the AGM looking at work done during 2021 and informing the members of FICIL priorities for upcoming years. Mr. Mārtiņš Zemītis (European Commission) also participated in the meeting, highlighting European Unions (EU) Green Deal effect on business and what the EU expects from Latvia when implementing the Green Deal strategy.

Also, four new Members of the FICIL Executive Board were elected. We welcome Mr. Reinhold Schneider, Chairman of the Board Schwenk Latvija, Ms. Zlata Elksniņa-Zaščirinska, Country Managing Partner PwC Latvija, Mr. Valts Kārkliņš, Large Business Customer Director at BITE Latvia, and Mr. Alvis Ērglis, Director of Sales at Circle K Latvia on joining the FICIL Board. You can read about the new elected FICIL Executive Board here.

New FICIL member – Enefit Green

We are excited to welcome our newest member, renewable energy producer Enefit Green on joining FICIL. Among other things, Mr. Juris Antužs, Head of Enefit Green in Latvia, stated that “the Enefit Green team is experienced and determined and is ready to actively participate in FICIL”.

Enefit Green is a subsidiary of the Eesti Energia group and since October 21, 2021, the company shares have been listed on the Nasdaq Tallinn Stock Exchange. Enefit Green has production units in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland. In addition, the company has a development project in Finland. Enefit Green has a total of 22 wind parks, 38 solar power parks, four CHP plants, a pellet plant and a hydroelectric power plant. You can read about FICIL new member – Enefit Green here.

FICIL work groups
  • On 4 and 18 February, work group held meetings with representatives from Bank of Latvia to hear their opinion on data governance and data analysis in public sector institutions. During the meeting work group emphasised that there is a clear lack of competency to analyse data in public sector institutions.
Green Economy Development
  • On 11 February, work group met with Ministry of Regional Development and Environmental Protection (VARAM) to discuss normative regulation process, educating and raising awareness of CO2 question to private sector and green data governance. Work group reiterated that FICIL wants to avoid that only companies drive long-term sustainable green change and instead see greater role for public sectors to encourage and be the driving force for green transition.
  • Work group met internally on 17 February to discuss its next steps, meeting topics with public sector institutions to address the outstanding issue of inter-ministry cooperation.
  • On 11 February, FICIL sent a letter outlining answers to questions VARAM posed about policies related to calculating CO2 emissions.

“Inefficient horizontal cooperation between ministries continues to pose challenge to effective green transition” – Dace Cīrule (Leader of FICIL Green Economy development work group)

Labour Issue & Requalification
  • On 1 February, work group met with Ministry of Health and continued the ongoing discussions about issues related to sick-leave certificates.
  • On 10 February, work group met internally to discuss next steps on how to continue discussing the problems with sick-leave certificates and mandatory health examinations (MHE). FICIL plans to share information with public sector on MHE and aim to include all the frequently asked questions, best and worst examples of MHE process with the aim to encourage public sector in addressing the outstanding issues with MHE process.
Transport & Infrastructure
  • On 3 February, work group met with Ministry of Transport to hear its efforts in addressing existing issues within the transport sector and plans for sector’s green transition.
Looking forward

FICIL Executive Board is planning to meet with Mr. Krišjānis Kariņš, the Prime Minister of Latvia in early March to discuss issues related to shadow economy and the challenges government face to achieve effective public sector reforms.

Moreover, FICIL Executive Board will hold FICIL Strategy session at the end of March to discuss and start the work on formulating FICIL new strategy.

In March, work groups are planning to hold multiple meetings with public sector to crystalise the necessary recommendations before the upcoming position paper writing stage. See below some of the meetings work groups are planning to hold during March:

  • Digitalisation work group will meet Ms. Ieva Ilvesa, Adviser to President of Latvia for Information and Digital policy to discuss digital transformation, issues with data driven policymaking and a need for centralised governance in implementing digitalisation policy.
  • Also, Green Economy Development work group hopes to meet Mr. Mārtiņš Zemītis from European Commission to discuss EU’s Green Deal and what is expected from Latvia to achieve its green targets.
  • Moreover, Labour Issue & Requalification work group will meet internally to discuss the potential necessity for a new/updated Labour Act.
  • Also, Food & Drink Industry work group will meet with Ministry of Health to hear its stance on the EU’s Farm2Fork strategy and their view on FICIL Position Paper’s recommendations related to food and drink industry.

You can still sign up for FICIL work groups by filling in the form here or by e-mailing ficil@ficil.lv. Full list of FICIL’s work groups is available here.

To find out more, follow us on Twitter and Facebook or visit our webpage www.ficil.lv

-Your FICIL Team