“I would like the members, many [EU] members to share the same economic indicators as Lithuania, I would really like that because if I look at the budget, if I look at the growth, debt, the quality of financial sector… I must say it’s very encouraging,” Larosière, former president of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), told reporters at the Eurofi Financial Forum, which opened in Vilnius on Thursday.
Lithuanian presidency of the EU Council coincided with an important period, he said adding that a compromise on the Banking Union and other key issues was expected to be reached by the end of the year.
“In the spring of 2014, there are going to be elections to the [European] Parliament, therefore the legislative life of the European Union will be, if I may say so, complicated, stalled for some time. Therefore the issues that are on the table now and not yet finalized have to be, if possible, finalized by the end of the year. If presidency [i.e. Lithuania] can bring together compromises… I think they will have granted an enormous service to the Banking Union,” Larosière said.
He added that the approach of Lithuania’s Finance Minister Rimantas Šadžius towards the presidency and EU problems offered hope that the issues of banks would be solved.
Politicians and bankers attending the event will discuss ways to strengthen the financial sector and stimulate growth of the Union’s economy as well as the issues pertaining to the development of the Banking Union and the recovery and resolution of banks.
Mario Draghi, President of the European Central Bank, and finance ministers from seven European Union’s (EU) countries, including Germany, France, the Netherlands, Sweden, Poland, the UK, and Spain, will attend the forum.
The list of participants will also include several EU commissioners, including Algirdas Šemeta, as well as OECD Secretary General Angel Gurria.
Lithuania, which now holds the rotating EU Council presidency, hosts the forum for the first time. Around 500 participants should attend the event.
Members of the Economic and Financial Affairs (Ecofin) Council will also arrive to Vilnius on Thursday.