The government should decentralise state-controlled enterprises, public institutions and government organisations to the regions to move more jobs out of the capital to the regions, especially to the underdeveloped municipalities, said parliamentarian Kęstutis Masiulis.
Kęstutis Masiulis
© DELFI / Kiril Čachovskij

“State companies and institutions provide many services for which the place where the employees work does not matter. Lithuanian Railways, Lithuanian Post, energy companies could offer bookkeeping, personnel or sales services not in Vilnius, but in Šiauliai, Panevėžys or Marijampolė instead,” said Masiulis.

“An example is the Sodra call centre with 26 workstations, which is set up at Radviliškis. By far the best paid jobs are concentrated in the capital, where on average the salaries are 25% higher. There is no effort made to create more jobs in the regions.”

Masiulis, member of the conservative Homeland Union, said the population is rapidly declining in smaller municipalities because the government is failing to implement an effective regional development policy.

“In just a year Pagėgiai, Joniškis and Ignalina municipalities have lost 3% of their population. Invest Lithuania specialists recognise that entrepreneurs are happy to invest in Vilnius, where there are labour shortages, but avoid the regions.”

About 110,000 employees work at the public sector in Vilnius. This represents about 40% of all employees in the city, while in Marijampolė, Telšiai, Klaipėda and others counties, this share is below 20%.

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