Remigijus Šimašius, Mayor of Lithuania's capital Vilnius, says that real financial changes will be visible in Vilnius after 2016. He intends to invoke foreign financial institutions to manage the city's debts.
Remigijus Šimašius
© DELFI / Mindaugas Ažušilis

At Monday's meeting with new heads of municipalities, President Dalia Grybauskaitė said that the greatest cause for concern are municipalities "that are indebted the worst and where the most shady things happened", referring to Vilnius.

Mayor Šimašius, of the Liberal Movement, has promised rapid changes. According to him, shady governance practices will be eliminated within the first 100 days of his term in office.

The second goal is the reduction of debt and management of finances. The mayor says this will require more time, but residents should feel the changes as soon as next year.

"With financial matters it is, of course, more difficult: a part of previous liabilities remain, the budget for 2015 had been approved and money is being spent fast. Naturally, it is hard to expect a breakthrough this year. However, I see ways how to improve spending next year, manage companies better and solve some of the problems," said Šimašius.

The mayor believes that creditors' attitudes have changed since the election of new government in Vilnius. Moreover, foreign financial institutions participate in talks over debt refinancing and are expected to offer better crediting conditions.

"There have been preliminary talks and I have witnessed a positive reaction from financial institutions. My goal is not to limit mourselves to Lithuanian financial institutions but to talk with foreign ones as well, and consider all borrowing opportunities," said Šimašius.

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