State and public services
Medicines production and sales account for 55% of the industry (249 companies with aggregate turnover of EUR 1.202 billion), healthcare – 34% (388 companies, EUR 750.780 million), trade in medical equipment and supplies – 12% (142 companies, EUR 243.559 million);Latvian pharmaceutical companies export 90% of their output;
The economy of Latvia is a free market economy, it is regulated by appropriate laws, protecting commercial rights, trademarks and investments;<br style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: sans-serif, Arial, Verdana, "Trebuchet MS"; font-size: 13px; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);" />The requirements of the European Union are included in laws of Latvia;
There were approximately 104,000 enterprises in Lithuania in early 2017. <br style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: sans-serif, Arial, Verdana, "Trebuchet MS"; font-size: 13px; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);" />Every year, the government of Lithuania strives to improve the country’s business environment; as a result, Lithuania regularly moves up in international ratings.
Even though the transport and logistics industry is one of the most important sectors of the national economy of Latvia, downturn is continuing in the sector because of the uncertain situation in Europe and tensions with Russia. Year on year, the proportion of transport and warehousing in the total gross domestic product decreased 0.5 percentage points.
In the first ten months of 2016, the number of transactions on the Baltic real estate market rose by 6% against the respective period a year before. Given the acquisition and merger (A&M) trends in the Baltics over the past three years, the year of 2016 was closed with a comparatively high number of M&A transactions on the whole, the authors of Prudentia M&A Folio report have concluded.
In 2015 the power market was liberalized for households in Latvia, allowing new players to show up and present competitive offers to customers. In April 2017 liberalization of the natural gas market will take place, providing for the end of JSC Latvijas Gāze natural gas utility’s monopoly rights and opening of the market.
The number of employed persons in Latvia was 895,000 or 61.8% of the population aged 15-74 years in the third quarter of 2016The registered unemployment level was at 9.5% of the economically active population in the third quarter of 2016Unemployment in 2020 is planned at 8.2% (the Finance Ministry projects)
- In regards to the proportion of the sector’s overall turnover, 46% of overall turnover is made up of construction and finishing work, 24% is made up of the sale of construction materials, 17% construction of roads and bridges, 8.6% manufacturing of construction materials, and 5.5% architectural and design services.
2016 was not the most successful year for Latvia’s economy, mostly due to uncertainty in external markets. Even though at the beginning of the year Latvia’s growth figures were projected at around 3%, in reality Latvia’s GDP increased by only 1.6% last year.
Latvia has the fourth fastest Internet in the world, only a step behind the technology superpowers. Export from ICT companies continues to grow every year, which points to the fact that those enterprises whose chief market currently is local also have the potential of evolving into successful players on foreign markets, as several start-ups have shown.
Latvia has set ambitious goals: in two years, it will be among the most competitive countries in the world with a favorable business environment and competitive taxes on labor in the Baltic region.
The level of unemployment and its structure
It took a little less than five years for Latvia to move from being the fastest growing economy in the EU to the fastest shrinking and then back to fastest growth again. This time the drivers of growth are different.
Republic of Latvia is located in the north-eastern Europe. It is washed by the Baltic Sea and the Gulf of Riga. In the north Latvia borders Estonia, in the east – Russia, in the south-east – Byelorussia, and in the south – Lithuania. The total length of the land border is1368 km, and the sea border – 498 km. The capital of Latvia – Riga is the largest city in the Baltic States.
Latvian information and communications technology (ICT) companies have world-class abilities. ICT exports are strong, and have proven themselves. Companies presently mainly selling mainly to the domestic market have the opportunity to grow and develop exports by transferring experience gained on the domestic market to neighboring countries and the wider European market.
The health care system in Latvia is currently experiencing significant difficulties. However, private business in this industry, as well as in pharmaceuticals, is profitable and gainful.