news.am, Armenia
Jan 3 2012

Armenian-Lithuanian relations became more intensive, especially in
political field - Interview


January 03, 2012 | 19:56

Armenian News-NEWS.am presents an interview with Lithuania's
Ambassador to Armenia H.E. Giedrius Apuokas.


In 2011 Lithuania held chairmanship in the OCSE. How did it affect the
relations between Armenia and Lithuania?

Chairmanship in the OCSE for Lithuania one of the most responsible
tasks assumed in the International Organizations yet, I would not say,
that changed character of our relations, but definitely made them more
intensive, especially in the political field. Just to remember the
visit of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Audronius
Ažubalis in the capacity of the Chairman of OSCE, visit of the
President of the Republic of Lithuania Dalia Grybauskaitė, other high
ranking officials from MFA and MoD. These visits mostly concentrated
on issues related to the chairmanship and issues of regional
significance, but that also was excellent opportunity to touch upon
bilateral issues. While speaking about relations between Armenia and
Lithuania, I can't pass over other events and facts that are not
related to the OSCE. We had very interesting visit of our Minister of
Education Gintaras Steponavičius to Armenia, which opens possibilities
for exchange of students, cooperation between state institutions of
both states in field of reforms in the field of different levels of
education, direct relations between our universities and colleges. We
are looking forward to the visit of delegation of the Ministry of
Education of Armenia at the beginning of next year. We are actively
involved in passing of relevant Lithuanian expertise in field of
reforms using frameworks provided by EU. Our experts are part of the
team of EU Advisory Group, from the beginning of next year Lithuanian
experts will lead two EU-Armenia Twinning projects and participate in
one as younger partner.

This year was marked by a significant event - opening of the Armenian
Embassy in Vilnius. What is your opinion how will opening of the
embassy affect development of relations in the field of economy?

Opening of Armenian Embassy in Vilnius is sincerely appreciated by
Lithuanian side and certainly will have positive impact on all aspects
of our relations, including economic ties, although our embassy in
Yerevan is making any available effort to provide information to
businessmen on both sides, but Lithuanian businessmen now will have
source of information closer to home and with different experience and
knowledge, that can provide we.

How do you assess economic relations between our states? What
development prospects do they have?

Economic relations is one of the fields of our relations where there
is a lot of space for improvement, said that, I should note, that
there is a clear rise of interest of Lithuanian companies in
activities in Armenia during approximately one year. Some Lithuanian
businessmen are exploring possibilities for trade and investment,
others are already here. Baltic Information Technologies, Visaginas
based company, is involved in creation of software for Metzamor
nuclear power plant, ACME Lithuania, largest distributor of IT
products in Baltic states acquired Armenian IT company and established
ACC Armenia, company with ambitions to become largest wholesale IT
distributor in Armenia. Lithuanian company Ecoservice participates in
tender declared by Yerevan municipality for the waste management and I
hope will succeed, Avia Solutions Group from Vilnius explores
possibilities provide different services for aviation industries and
already provides pilot training for Armavia, one of the largest
Lithuanian food industry companies VICI Group also operates on
Armenian market. These intensifying ties provide hope for expanding of
future economic cooperation.

How do you like to spend the holidays? What Lithuanian Christmas or
New Year tradition can you name?

Since I have family spread over the Europe, we are planning to gather
for the Christmas Eve at our home in Vilnius, according to Lithuanian
tradition this evening is spent in the circle of the closest family,
having meal (at least 12 dishes, without meat or dairy products)
together, exchanging gifts at the end and a lot of the people attends
night Mass at the church. During couple of next days, which are
Christmas holiday you are supposed to meet friends and celebrate. New
Year is party time, mostly and mainly enjoyed by younger people, who
leave homes for clubs, private parties, sometimes in country side,
others celebrate on the streets and city squares.

And finally, your wishes to the Armenian people.

Sincere wishes of bright spirits and festive mood for Christmas time,
enjoy being together, sharing love and happiness within your families
and with your friends. For the New Year I would like to wish, first of
all Peace and, of course, good health, joy, prosperity in the families
and the State, fruitful work which would bring you satisfaction.


From: Baghdasarian