The 2008 financial crisis, geopolitical tensions, and other macro factors have slowed down SOE privatization. In some CEE countries, the trend has even reversed. Estonia nationalized its railways in 2007 and Lithuania bought out private investors in its energy companies.
I am not questioning the values of politicians. If they believe that the means of production should belong to the state, it is their right to do so. However, we are living in an independent Lithuania and so members of the parliament must at least be objective and impartial.
Public tenders are beneficial to the taxpayers who actually pay for them. According to the Public Procurement Office of Lithuania, in 2015, over 300 million euro were spent without a competitive procurement procedure. This means that taxpayers have most likely overpaid in the majority of cases.
If a person works, strives and believes in being primarily responsible for his/her own destiny and not someone else, if that individual plans own finances, saves up and at least tries to escape from the “from pay to pay” circle – such a person is considered as the middle class or has all the potential to become it.
As usual, the wording of this political declaration is vague and the purpose is unclear. Will it bring more flexibility to the EU economy and labor markets or will it make them more rigid? The whole text is permeated with the spirit of having your cake and eating it at the same time.
International trade has always been a contentious issue. Even those who agree that it is beneficial for all countries involved sometimes succumb to the fallacy that trade is a good thing only if it occurs between countries that have a similar level of economic development.
Posting of workers plays an essential role in the internal market of the European Union. Drawing on the fundamental values of the free movement of persons and the free movement of services, it allows workers from one EU member state to work and carry out services in another member state on a temporary basis.
Piketty’s publication has reignited the debate over taxation. Proponents of higher taxation seized the opportunity to increase taxes. Even some countries of Central Eastern Europe, a region that has traditionally prided itself on flat taxes, have faltered.
You were ‘nice’? Here is a reward. You were ‘naughty’ – here is a punishment. There is a kind of a social contract between an individual and Santa Claus. This simple and intuitive logic is not uncommon in many cultures. But I cannot help at wonder: what would Santa Claus be like if he was a government figure?