VILNIUS, May 6 -- The standoff between Russia and Ukraine will affect Lithuanian economy only minimally, said Lithuania's finance minister Rimantas Sadzius on Tuesday.
"We have evaluated possible economical consequences of those tensions between Russia and Ukraine. Taking into account our exports of goods to Russia and 100 percent imports of natural gas from Gazprom, we would feel influence there," said Sadzius to Baltic News Service.
"But our evaluation is that impact will be limited," he added.
Sadzius' announcement came after the European Commission (EC) in its latest forecast affirmed positive outlook on Lithuanian economy unveiled Monday.
Lithuanian's gross domestic product (GDP) will grow 3.3 percent in 2014, the forecast showed.
The EC forecast the EU economy will expand by 1.6 percent in 2014 while the euro area will grow by 1.2 percent.
According to the EC, strong domestic demand will be the main driver of Lithuanian economy.
"While in the first quarter net exports had been the main growth driver, domestic demand took over in the second quarter. Substantial wage increases, low inflation, falling unemployment and strong confidence indicators boosted consumption," explained the EC.
The EC pointed out the risks to Lithuanian economy are connected to Russia.
"A further slowdown in Russia and the wider CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States) region might hamper trade and could affect sentiment with possible impacts on domestic demand," said the EC.
According to the forecast, the growth will pick up and reach 3.7 percent in 2015. Unemployment level in Lithuania is expected to decrease to 10.6 percent this year and 9.7 percent in 2015.
The growth of harmonized index of consumer prices is forecast to slow down to 1 percent this year and pick up to 1.8 percent in 2015.
Last year Lithuania's GDP rose by 3.3 percent, unemployment decreased to 11.8 percent, and index of consumer prices rose by 1.2 percent.