On 26 June 2018, the Minister of Transport and Communications of the Republic of Lithuania, appointed Mr Saulius Urbanavičius as the Director General of the State Enterprise Centre of Registers.
The Minister says that the new Director is tasked with ensuring the transparency and efficiency of the Centre of Registers, reviewing its business processes, improving the quality of the services provided and taking part in the process of opening data to the public. The Minister states that S. Urbanavičius is known as an experienced administrator, who has implemented quite a few reorganisations, and therefore is oriented towards teamwork.
S. Urbanavičius has started his work from getting acquainted with the activities and the staff of the Centre of Registers. The new Director is convinced that the staff has a strong desire to work for the State and understands the importance of their work. He expects sustainable work practices and meaningful future projects.
S. Urbanavičius has years of work experience in law enforcement institutions. He was engaged in creating the Customs Criminal Service (2000), contributed to the creation of laws and other legal acts regulating the fight against smuggling and corruption in Lithuania.
On the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the State of Lithuania, the President of the Republic of Lithuania awarded S. Urbanavičius the Officer's Cross of the Order of the Lithuanian Grand Duke Gediminas. He also has received other honorary awards and acknowledgements.
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April 17, 2018
Blockchain-based companies could become reality in Lithuania as early as 2019
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Lithuania is looking to become the first ever country to offer entities from around the world the opportunity to register and manage companies using blockchain technology. These Virtual Limited Liability Companies (VLLCs) would benefit from an innovation-friendly “sandbox” regulatory system that helps newcomers to set up operations. VLLCs would give companies a range of advantages. These include the ability for the company to be remotely managed, and for all share transactions to be fully transparent, as they would be performed entirely on an immutable blockchain.
The Lithuanian Centre of Registers (the manager of the country’s Register of Legal Entities) has already started to draft a proposal on legal amendments needed to make VLLCs a reality next year.
“Physical borders between countries are becoming a thing of the past. This ambitious project is the next logical step for Lithuania, given our track record in the field of financial technology (fintech),” argues Ieva Tarailiene, Acting Director General of Centre of Registers.
“Yet regulatory roadblocks are still present in the procedures for expanding businesses abroad. We are striving to become the first country to offer companies the possibility to register and manage companies remotely using blockchain technology, thus ensuring transparency and security.,” her colleague and blockchain enthusiast Jonas Udris concludes.
The plan has been endorsed by the Bank of Lithuania, the country’s regulator. The Bank is building a global reputation as a force for innovation, thanks to its positive stance on new ideas in fintech sector.
And Marius Jurgilas, a Member of the Board of the Bank of Lithuania, believes blockchain has huge potential. “Bank of Lithuania is already building LBChain – blockchain-based solutions accelerator for fintechs. Initiative to create virtual companies on blockchain is a move towards even more ambitious goal – creating LTChain, i.e. moving relevant public services on blockchain,” he says.
The ability to remotely establish and manage a company in the EU is on the wish-list of many fintech companies. Analysts from Invest Lithuania, a foreign direct investment and business development agency, believe companies from Singapore, the US, Israel and other non-EU locations would all be interested in such a service.
“As the world is moving towards a paper- and bureaucracy-free future, jurisdictions that adapt to the increasing demand for instant solutions will win in the long run. As of now, the country already offers fintech companies the ability to receive a payments institution (PI) or e-money institution (EMI) license in just three months, which is 2-3 faster than in other EU countries. These draft proposals on the possibility of establishing a virtual company which can be managed remotely is another step in the right direction,” explains Mantas Katinas, Managing Director of Invest Lithuania.
According to Jonas Udris, introducing blockchain-based VLLCs is essential for Lithuania to strengthen its leadership in technological progress in the financial sector. The most important innovation, says Udris, would be a legal framework and a technological infrastructure that allows shares in a corporate entity to be issued and traded on the blockchain.
“Blockchain-based VLLCs represent an entirely new level of transparency, security, and convenience. With them, information about a company’s shareholders and the entire history of share ownership would be easily accessible to anybody at any time. Shareholders could manage their shares online, in real time, with far less paperwork. Shares could even be traded directly on the blockchain, without intermediaries,” says Udris.
This new breed of VLLCs could range from small companies owned by a single individual to large corporations with publicly-traded shares and other securities. They would be fully-recognised corporate entities under Lithuanian law and would file financial statements and pay taxes in Lithuania.
If the necessary amendments to the legal framework are made, entities from around the world would be able to register virtual companies in Lithuania as early as 2019. Those eager to test out the new system should look out for a Hackathon event expected in the Autumn of 2018. Anyone interested can get in touch directly with the Centre of Registers.
December 28th, 2017 publication in a national newspaper „Lietuvos žinios“ about the Horizon 2020 project
InnoITeam: a solution to stop brain drain?
Dr Romualdas Požėra, the Chief Strategic Planning Expert of the Centre of Registers, says that the projects with the aim to pool and retain the highest competencies are becoming more and more important in the country where many discussions are going on about the brain drain.
What was the goal and intentions of the partners?
The project with symbolical title “InnoITeam” has offered a unique opportunity to get familiar with the best practices of Sweden, which is one of the most technologically advanced countries in the world, in pooling competencies and utilising them not only in the field of research and development but also transferring innovative solutions to business and public sector.
Kaunas University of Technology is the main coordinator of the InnoITeam project where excellence of Kaunas University in the Internet of Things in the Baltic region will be combined with the competencies of other project partners. Vilnius Gediminas Technical University is strong in the field of cybernetics, while the Centre of Registers is the largest keeper of the public sector data. The expertise of Swedish University of Linkoping in the field of data visualization is globally well known; whereas the Swedish Research and Innovation Centre RISE has been proficient in developing and implementing innovations in IT sector. The establishment of such centre of excellence in Lithuania will enable the transition from declarations on innovations to the creation of innovation ecosystem.
Moreover, as I have already mentioned, such projects motivate young people, prevent the brain drain and may also attract the potential of the Lithuanian academic diaspora abroad.
Can you give some examples how the results of this project could serve the public?
The scope of applying the Internet of Things solutions is very wide: from automated production, energy or transportation to public security and healthcare. In general, the intelligent systems analyse our behaviour and changes in environmental parameters, make appropriate decisions on the basis of the obtained results and are able to learn and constantly improve the quality of forecasts. To my opinion, these systems will be the usual thing in future as computers, mobile phones or TV sets today. However, many problems should be solved on the way: in particular, processing of huge data flows, analysis and delivery of results in a human-readable way as well as ensuring of cyber-security. Therefore, artificial intelligence and cognitive computing solutions should be created or have to be adapted for these purposes. In addition, the challenges of personal data protection and certain legal aspects of liability should be also addressed.
How do partners imagine the project progress and organisation?
Although the project is primarily aimed at research and educational activities, it will also bring a significant applied value to the public sector, especially in developing future public e-services.
Already now, we have to focus on digital transformation and a smart public sector, which is based on the efficient personalised public services. This can be achieved by combining or utilising the data, which is our property and which could be the raw material of the future economy.
How can this be achieved?
The activities of the Centre of Excellence will focus on the creation, research and development of a smart environment and service ecosystem in the strategic directions set at the global level: future way of life, work, education and government. Therefore, the understanding and support of the national government authorities is of particular importance when it comes to new international joint study programs, the development of the Internet of Things, the control of urban growth or the resolution of demographic problems using flexible predictive models or cognitive computing.
Why did you get involved in this project? What benefits do you see?
This is an opportunity to participate directly in creating innovations and implementing them. In addition, all this is in perfect harmony with the main mission of the Centre of Registers, i.e. to effectively manage the information resources of the country, thus creating value for members of the public. Given the country’s digitalisation goals, this is an opportunity to increase data dissemination, test, deploy and implement Open Data business models using the data kept by the Centre of Registers. Of course, great attention will be paid to the protection of private information.
Thank you for the conversation.
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EU Twinning project KS 15 IPA JH 04 16 “Support to Civil Registration and Document Security”
December 4, 2017
In its path towards the EU Kosovo is recommended to reduce an administrative burden for the citizens
Lithuania proposes the Civil Registry Agency in Kosovo to refuse paper certificates and ensure efficient exchange of digital data by reducing an administrative burden for citizens in the country. At the same time, data stored in the state databases of Kosovo are proposed to have legal power.
Such primary recommendations were given by the specialists of the Centre of Registers to the Civil Registry Agency in Kosovo, which is the beneficiary in the Twinning project implemented by State Enterprise Centre of Registers, Lithuania, and the International Cooperation Agency of the Association of Netherlands Municipalities, the Netherlands. The purpose of the project is to provide support to Kosovo institutions to improve the civil status registration system.
During the project, Lithuania together with the partner from the Netherlands will share the best practice and provide recommendations on improvement and harmonisation of legal framework for the registration of civil status acts, development of new efficient business processes and modernisation of register management information systems that would ensure provision of electronic services for the residents and businesses in Kosovo.
Kipras Mensevičius, representative of the Centre of Registers, who presented proposals for legal framework to the officials in Kosovo says that currently legal acts in Kosovo do not provide for the solutions on reducing the number of certificates that are issued to or are requested from the residents; therefore the Civil Registry Agency of Kosovo and other public institutions request various information from the applicants instead of taking it from the databases. The country is proposed to start from major changes in legal framework, enabling transition from paper to electronic documents and ensuring efficient exchange of data between the institutions.
During the project that would last about two and a half years, the administrative and organisational structures in the public administration sector of Kosovo that are related to civil status registration, including institutional internal and external relationships of subordination shall be reviewed with reference to the EU standards and experience of the Netherlands and Lithuania.
The overall objective of the Twinning project is to support the Civil Registry Agency and Municipal Civil Status offices in improving the standards of civil registration system and document security in accordance with EU standards and best practices.
Spokesperson of the Centre of Registers
Tel. +370 5 2688355
Mob. tel. +370 652 56655
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