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At the Government Office, business leaders subscribed to fair price conversion

Date

2014 09 08

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Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevičius, Minister of Finance Rimantas Šadžius and Vice-Minister of Economy Rasa Noreikienė along with the Association of Local Authorities of Lithuania, other Lithuanian business associations and the largest business leaders signed the Memorandum of Good Business Practice during the Adoption of the Euro. For this day, the Memorandum has been joined by 37 associations, 44 municipalities and 242 companies who have voluntarily committed to ensure fair price conversion from litas to euro and not to use the euro introduction as an excuse to increase the prices of goods and services. 
 
‘Joining this initiative is the commitment of fair businesses not to make the adoption of the euro an excuse to causeless price increase. After 22 August, when the dual display of prices in litas and euro gets mandatory, the market supervision bodies will carry out inspections and control how businesses comply with the requirements of their voluntary commitment in practice,’ the Prime Minister said. 

According to Minister of Finance Rimantas Šadžius, residents will closely watch any possible price changes and will pay attention to the trading and service provision venues marked with the ‘Fair Conversion’ logo.

 ‘I believe that the businessmen who have joined the fair price conversion campaign will be able to dispel through their practical activities people’s groundless fears about the growth of prices against the adoption of the currency,’ Minister of Finance said.
 
The Ministry of Economy, which has initiated the subscription to the Memorandum of Good Business Practice, expects the majority of business community, municipalities and companies under municipal control to join the Memorandum and comply with its requirements.
 
‘Voluntary subscription to the fair price conversion campaign demonstrates business’s maturity and sense of responsibility towards consumers. In this transition period, I would like to encourage both businesses and consumers to be more positive about the situation, unite and cooperate to achieve our common goal of smooth changeover to the euro in Lithuania,’ Vice-Minister of Economy Rasa Noreikienė said.

At the subscription to the Memorandum event, the leaders of business associations encouraged their members and companies from other business sectors to join the fair price conversion initiative.
 
‘I believe that the signing of this Memorandum will contribute to smooth switchover to the new currency in Lithuania; moreover, we want to use our example to encourage our colleague suppliers and producers to join this commitment to act in good faith,’ said Laurynas Vilimas, Executive Director of the Association of Lithuanian Trade Enterprises, which unites retail and wholesale trade companies.
 
Vice-President of the Lithuanian Confederation of Industrialists Gediminas Rainys stressed that joining the Memorandum will help ensure compliance with fair pricing principles in both Lithuanian and the EU: ‘National industrialists expect that the support of the euro adoption will contribute to the stability of economic environment, give a new impulse for business development and encourage the creation of new jobs in Lithuania.’
The Association of Hotels and Restaurants of Lithuania, according to its President Evalda Šiškauskienė, has always supported and will continue to support transparent business initiatives; therefore, the idea of joining the Memorandum has not been questioned.
‘In fact, hotels have been long used to working in the euro zone and payments in the reservation systems are made in both currencies, so we are glad to share our experience with other business sectors as well. For restaurants and cafes, switchover to the euro will require a bit more time and investments; jet, I believe that we will manage to avoid major problems. Also, we encourage the suppliers for catering establishments to join the Memorandum as solidary participation in this initiative of all business sectors will help ensure price stability for consumers,’ Šiškauskienė said.
 
Business entities who have joined the Memorandum get the right to use the ‘Fair Conversion’ logo designed for this purpose and  mark with it trade and service provision venues as well as use it for marketing purposes and thus inform the consumer about the business entity’s compliance with the requirements laid down in the Memorandum. The list of economic entities that have joined the Memorandum is available at www.euras.lt.
 
The Memorandum can be joined till the day of the euro introduction, i.e., till 31 December 2014, by electronic means (www.euras.lt) or by completing a paper application which has to be submitted  to the Ministry of Economy, the administration of the municipality, the representatives of national or municipal authorities or non-governmental organisations, public undertaking Enterprise Lithuania and it’s representatives in the towns of Lithuania, business incubators and business information centers. 
 
The Law on the Euro Adoption in the Republic of Lithuania provides that warnings and penalties will be applicable for incorrect conversion of the prices of goods or services in litas to the prices in euro or in case of non-compliance with the requirements of the Law. 
 
The final decision concerning the admission of Lithuania to the euro zone was made on 23 July 2014 by the Council of Ministers of the EU. In 2015, Lithuania will become the 19th member of the euro zone and will adopt the common currency of the EU.