International organisations, including NATO and the EU, regard Lithuania as a reliable member and a partner committed to the objectives of the organisation. Lithuania is known to actively help other countries in the region on their path towards integration.
Always supporting freedom and democracy
Always a supporter of human rights and democracy, Lithuania has championed these values in the region since becoming the first country to break away from the Soviet Union’s oppressive regime.
Our fight has always been peaceful. On 23 August 1989, about two million people from Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia joined hands, forming a human chain—the Baltic Way—spanning 600 kilometres from Vilnius through Riga to Tallinn. This demonstration has become a symbol of successful non-violent resistance and gave impetus to democratic movements worldwide. The Baltic Way served as a positive example to other countries striving to re-establish their independence; it also sparked the process of German reunification.
In 2020, Lithuanians paid homage to the original accomplishment and expressed their support for the democratic aspirations of Lithuania’s neighbours in Belarus by forming a human chain that stretched 32 km from Vilnius to the Belarusian border.
Today, Lithuania stands together with the democratic world as a staunch supporter of Ukraine’s fight for its sovereignty and freedom in the war imposed by Russia.
Tackling global challenges
Lithuania, together with Estonia and Latvia, has always had a keen understanding of the risks presented by neighbouring Russia and has taken farsighted steps to secure itself.
Today, we no longer depend on Russian energy resources, which is the result of years of struggle for energy independence. In fact, Lithuania has become the first country in the EU to disconnect entirely from Russian gas supplies, calling on other European countries to follow suit. Since the beginning of April 2022, the Lithuanian gas system has been operating free of Russian gas imports. The decision to reduce country’s dependency on the Russian energy was made back in 2014, when Klaipėda LNG terminal, Independence, was inaugurated in a bid to end the monopoly of the Russian gas supply.
The Gas Interconnection Poland-Lithuania (GIPL), a gas pipeline connecting Lithuania and Poland, was launched on 1 May 2022. The 508-kilometre GIPL gas pipeline connects the gas market of Lithuania, other Baltic countries, and Finland to the European Union via Poland. The pipeline stretches for 165 kilometres in Lithuania and for 343 kilometres in Poland.
Lithuania secures its oil supply through excellent and profitable PKN Orlen-owned Mažeikių Nafta refinery and Būtingė oil terminal. Starting on 1 April 2022, Orlen has ceased all imports of the Russian oil and transitioned to importing from the Middle East, Africa, and other regions.
Lithuania gets a significant portion of its electricity through interconnectors from Sweden, Poland, and Latvia, while at the same time generating much of its electricity from renewable sources. The country still has electricity interconnectors with Russia and Belarus but no longer uses them for electricity imports.
Furthermore, Lithuania believes that green local energy is the only sustainable path to energy independence. The country has set a goal to generate 100% of its own electricity from renewables by 2030.
Cyber security leaders
Lithuania is making significant strides in cyber security. Ranked 6th globally in the National Cyber Security Index, the country heads an international cyber rapid response team that assists key EU institutions. Last year, Lithuania increased its spending on cyber security by 30%. It also plays host to the Regional Cyber Defence Centre—a joint initiative between Lithuania and the US that fosters multilateral practical cooperation in cyber defence.
Lithuania is also an initiator of the EU Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO) project: Cyber Rapid Response Teams and Mutual Assistance in Cyber Security (CRRT).
On 7 April, Lithuania celebrated the arrival of its second unicorn, Nord Security, a cyber security tech firm that has raised $100 million from investors at a $1.6 billion valuation. The company is renowned for its product, NordVPN, which is widely used around the world.
Co-creating the future of Ukraine
In the face of Russia’s imposed war against Ukraine, Lithuania stands in solidarity with Ukraine and provides support to it together with other countries and international organisations. Lithuania is actively mobilising international community to help Ukraine defend its freedom and sovereignty.
Lithuania is implementing four reconstruction projects in Ukraine: a mobile settlement for 36 Ukrainian families in Borodyanka was recently completed and handed over to Ukraine. The reconstruction of a school in Borodyanka and a kindergarten in Irpin is underway. The electricity supply network in Mykolaiv is also being restored and modernised. Lithuania is actively inviting other countries to join the reconstruction projects in Ukraine.