The euro, which became Lithuania’s currency at the beginning of this year, had a significant economic impact: as the rating agencies upgraded Lithuania’s credit ratings, the interest burden on the state, residents and businesses was eased, expenses related to the litas and euro exchange operations disappeared, and cross-border payments in euro became cheaper.
The European Commission has today released its latest Eurobarometer survey. In Lithuania, which joined the euro in January this year, the survey showed that 55% of respondents see the euro as good for their country and 77% see the euro as good for the EU.
Moody‘s credit rating agency upgraded Lithuania‘s long-term borrowing rating from Baa1 (positive outlook) to A3 (stable outlook). Moody’s decision was driven by competitiveness and resilience of Lithuania‘s economy, continuation of the Government‘s fiscal consolidation and country’s membership in the euro zone.
Today 100 days have passed since Lithuania adopted the Euro. The Euro adoption being a success story is proven by the fact that as many as 92% of the Lithuanians felt being well informed about the adoption of the Euro, and presently 68% of respondents favourably view the common European currency (exactly a year ago the number was just around 50%). The Ministry of Finance was one of the main organisers and coordinators of the process.
At the today‘s meeting of the Coordinating Committee on the Euro Adoption in the Republic of Lithuania presided over by the Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevičius the information about the process of adoption of the Euro in Lithuania has been presented. During the meeting which has also been attended by the Minister of Finance Rimantas Šadžius and the Chairman of the Board of the Bank of Lithuania Vitas Vasiliauskas it has been stated that the Euro adoption in the Republic of Lithuania was excellently coordinated and well organised.
A smooth adoption of the Euro enabled not only to improve international credit ratings of Lithuania but also to actually reduce borrowing costs. For instance, the interest rate on 10-year nominal term Government securities issued in March this year compared to that of the April 2014 Government securities emission decreased from 3.087% to 0.766%.