Growing social inequality, a weak welfare state, a low salary level, demographic transition, as well as emigration — particularly among young educated specialists — are core challenges for developing economic and social policies in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. At first glance, all three Baltic States have recovered from the economic and financial crisis of 2008-2009; however, the neo-liberal reforms and the austerity policies related to them have left deep traces on the societies of the Baltic States. In particular, the establishment of flat tax systems has created structures that make wealth distribution increasingly difficult.
The goal of Friedrich Ebert Foundation projects is to promote social dialogues in these three states, making a contribution to reducing economic disparities and communicating the necessity for establishing a higher social standard. FES is committed to sustainable economic and social policies that give equal priority to social, economic and environmental goals. The question of how to balance sustainable economic growth, the development of just social security systems and the establishment of necessary environmental standards in political practice is at the core of the foundation’s activities.