The Bank of Latvia and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) announced today that they will co-host a high-level conference in Riga on June 5, 2012.
Against the Odds: Lessons from the Recovery in the Baltics will bring together national and international policymakers and academics to review the policies that helped Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania emerge from a deep recession, restore balanced growth, and make progress towards or achieve their goal of euro adoption. They will also discuss the remaining challenges and lessons to be learned.
Prominent speakers will include Latvian Prime Minister Valdis Dombrovskis and Bank of Latvia Governor Ilmārs Rimšēvičs, European Commission Vice President Olli Rehn, Swedish Finance Minister Anders Borg, and the European Central Bank Executive Board Member Jörg Asmussen. Latvian President Andris Bērziņš and IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde will open the conference. Ms. Lagarde will also participate in the final panel discussion.
"Latvia has demonstrated that bringing the fiscal house in order, especially if well supplemented with structural reforms, is key to bringing an economy back to growth if you do it resolutely and early in the crisis, focusing on expenditure cuts rather than tax increases," Mr. Rimšēvičs said. "Latvia made it happen through speed, ownership, commitment, and solidarity. The Latvian experience is definitely worth analyzing in an international context and, with an outstanding group of policymakers and economists in attendance, this conference offers a good chance of doing just that," he added.
"I am looking forward to my first visit to Riga and to this important conference," said Ms. Lagarde. "Learning more about these countries’ achievements and experiences will benefit us all, and I look forward to a frank discussion that will help clarify the key challenges ahead and offer some practical and concrete advice."
The conference is open by invitation and to accredited media. Journalists are encouraged to register by June 4; a dedicated registration page for media will be available shortly on the conference website www.imf.org/latviaconference. The sessions will also be webcast on the same conference website.
Bank of Latvia
In Riga: David Moore, Resident Representative, firstname.lastname@example.org
; +371 6771 5999