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LIAA: 46 Investment Projects Launched Last Year

In 2023, 46 investment projects have been launched with the direct involvement of the Investment and Development Agency of Latvia (LIAA), which will bring EUR 618.9 million into the Latvian economy and provide 2,513 new jobs.

“Foreign companies are still eager to expand into Latvia and this year we have worked with 182 projects that have a potential of generating € 5 billion. Not all of these projects will come to fruition, but some will certainly become investment success stories. We see a strong interest in energy and ICT projects, and manufacturing is also growing, with existing plants being expanded and new ones being built. The volume of investments attracted this year compared to 2022 has increased by around 30%,” said Laura Štrovalde, LIAA Deputy Director in charge of investment and energy.

Global trends in the growth of the smart energy sector have helped to attract investment. The sector is developing and this is also influencing investors’ interest in Latvia. The country’s renewable energy policy fosters new investment. Several projects in the smart energy sector are complementary to one another and will form a value chain, contributing to Latvia’s energy independence and enabling it to become an electricity exporter. The implementation of economically significant projects such as the Latvian-Estonian offshore wind park ELWIND also plays a key part. This sets the stage for the development of hydrogen and other energy-intensive technologies. Companies such as Stena Line are currently working in this direction, while Fokker Next Gen intends to develop hydrogen-powered passenger aircraft in Latvia.

“Among the investment projects that have been implemented, the Italian company Marcegaglia entering Latvia is worth mentioning. This was one of the first cases in the EU where the European Commission and other institutions, together with the public administration, legally managed to take over a subsidiary of Severstal, a company backed by Russian capital, in Latvia. In 2023, the Swiss pharmaceutical company Roche opened its business service centre in Riga, while the Finnish company Crimppi, which produces various installation materials, expanded into Liepāja,” says L. Štrovalde, adding that this year has been particularly productive for Liepāja in terms of attracting investments, as other projects were implemented and companies such as Yokohama TWS, which produces industrial machinery equipment, and iCotton, a manufacturer of personal hygiene products, increased their production capacity.

Data visualisation

The bioeconomy sector played a positive role in attracting investment and creating new jobs in 2023, due to the expansion of several companies already represented in Latvia – both by investing in equipment and by creating new jobs. A similar trend can be observed in the ICT sector, where several companies continue to expand.

“In the area of investment attraction, we have been able to provide a high quality of service to our clients, including through cooperation with public authorities, municipalities, universities and other partners in the private sector. An important factor in attracting foreign investment is the willingness of local authorities to play an active role in the process. It is important for every investor to be aware that the company is welcome and will receive the necessary support, not only from LIAA but also from the municipality,” explains L. Štrovalde.

A number of important projects have been identified with the assistance of LIAA’s economic representations abroad. In total, LIAA has economic representations in 20 countries, which provide support to Latvian exporters and work in the field of investment attraction.

Of the 46 projects implemented, 24 are based in Riga and the Baltic Sea Region, 12 in Kurzeme, four in Vidzeme and three in both Latgale and Zemgale. Sectors represented include the bioeconomy (12 projects), ICT (10), smart energy (7), photonics and smart materials (6), biomedicine (3) and others. 

The LIAA strategy aims to attract € 2 billion of investment between 2023 and 2029, opening up 7,500 new job opportunities. In 2024, LIAA’s target for attracting foreign investment is € 660 million.

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