Latvia: Small but competitive!


Stockholm School of Economics in Riga

There are many good reasons why the next BDF Summit is organized in Riga. Latvia is always an interesting country to visit, but especially in these years some fascinating observations can be made:

  • Latvia has the highest growth rate in the EU, at the same time being among the poorest EU member states.
  • Latvia shows a high performance in export and manufacturing but a relatively low performance in innovation and entrepreneurship with a low level of R&D investments.
  • Latvia – like the two other Baltic States – has developed close political cooperations with the Nordic welfare states. At the same time it has the highest unequality in EU measured in distribution of prosperity.
  • Latvians are in general less happy and more dissatisfied with the economy and the political system compared to other Europeans.

These – and other – fascinating observations on the Latvian economic performance are published in “Latvia’s Competitiveness Report” presented in 2011 in Riga and soon published in an English version.

Written by a team of authors from the Baltic International Centre for Economic Policy Studies (Zane Cunska and Alf Vanags), Harvard Business School (Christian Ketels) and SSE Riga (Anders Paalzow) the Latvia Competitiveness Report provides a fact-driven and comprehensive analysis of the Latvian economy outlining a wide range of challenges facing the country in the years to come.

Latvia’s Competitiveness Report is one of the key inputs to inspire the discussion at the BDF Summit, especially at the plenary session “Competitiveness, Investments and Business Development – Manufacturing the Future”. The analysis and findings of the report will also inspire the discussion at the BDF Competitiveness Advisory Council on 29 May co-hosted by SSER Rector Anders Paalzow.


Mr. Paalzow says about the report:

“The Latvia Competitiveness Report provides a state of the art analysis of Latvia’s competitiveness and future prospects. I do hope that it will provide a basis for informed policy making in the years to come – policy making that will release Latvia’s full potential for the benefit of the entire nation. Furthermore, if the bottlenecks identified in the Report are properly addressed, then the Latvian economy will experience solid economic growth in the coming decade”.

He adds: “It is also worth mentioning that throughout the Report, Latvia’s performance is benchmarked against Estonia and Lithuania, thereby providing insights into how Latvia’s two Baltic neighbours perform. Hence the Report should be of interest to anyone with an interest in the recent economic development of the three Baltic countries”.

Download the Report (in English)

To read more about the report visit Stockholm School of Economics in Riga website



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