Members of the European Union (EU) since 2004, the Baltic countries have become, in a very short period of time, a formidable example of financial management and promotion of competitiveness and investment.
After a bold adjustment in 2009, which included very significant cuts in public spending and a contractive fiscal policy to contain the deficit, these three markets experimented the fastest recovery in the whole of the EU, returning to a growth of 6% in the last quarter of 2009, after having fallen over 15% during the first 9 months of the year. The construction sector, which sagged in 2009 and the retail one, which lost a third of its size in the same year, have ceased being a ballast for the rest of the economy and a boom in exports and in internal consumption have propelled the Baltics to the path of a sound and sustainable growth, based now in productivity and not anymore in bubbles. Their unemployment figures are already below 6.5% in Estonia, 8.5% % in Lithuania and 10% in Latvia.
In 2015 the value of the external assets of the Baltic central banks is higher than any other registered in their history, inflation (which used to be a huge concern during the previous years) has stopped being a problem, consumers’ confidence grows and public deficit is under control.
Their excellent economic figures turned the Baltics not only into the growth leaders of its region, but of all the EU: the World Bank expects that in 2015 its GDP will continue to grow ahead the majority of European countries. The business consultancy firm Ernst & Young forecast that their economies will grow about 5% annually since the coming year. Several sectors of their economies, such as real estate (which has awakened with considerable force in 2013), machinery or equipment represent today big opportunities for foreign investors.
Because of its legal security, its business-friendly atmosphere, its privileged location and the competitiveness of its costs, Lithuania is also a very attractive logistic platform that can provide access to the big markets of its environment and to free economic zones with interesting fiscal advantages. In fact, given their price and reliability, many trucks bringing goods into Russia from Western Europe travel with Lithuanian number plates.