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Brussels, 7 December 2008

Statement updating on the EU financial assistance mission to Latvia

Following the statement by the European Commission and the EU Presidency on Latvia on November 21, 2008 (see press release IP/08/1756), good progress has been made towards a possible EU-supported program for the country.

In cooperation with the International Monetary Fund, some individual European governments and regional and other multilateral institutions, we are working with the authorities on the design of a program that maintains Latvia's current exchange rate parity and band.

This will require agreement on exceptionally strong domestic adjustment policies and sizeable external financing, as well as broad political consensus in Latvia. In this context, we welcome the commitment made today by the Latvian authorities.

All participants are working to bring these program discussions to a rapid conclusion.

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