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Lithuania is known to be a Baltic tiger due to its impressive economic development ever since the country won independence and gradually become to shift to the West. It became an EU member in 2004 and has since seen a significant rise in foreign investment. Online Forex trading is not among the most popular market in the country but it does still take place and it is adequately reflected in the country’s legislation.
As is in Ireland and Russia, the central bank is the main financial regulator which is in charge of the monetary policy and also oversees the financial sector. Bank of Lithuania reports directly to the government and regulates forex trading as well. It holds the power to issue and revoke brokers licenses, follow up on consumer complaints as well as regularly post warnings regarding companies suspected of illegal activities. Its website is available in English and very easy to navigate and understand.
An interesting thing to point out regarding Latvia is that the National Bank issues three types of licenses for financial market participants and each of them has a different starting capital requirement. A license requires a capital of 730 000 EUR, B license requires 125 000 EUR and C license requires 50 000 EUR. As a member of the EU, the Authorities in Latvia aim at synchronising the country’s regulation with the the Pan-European rules on Forex trading. They include a negative balance protection, segregation of accounts and a cap on the maximum allowed leverage of 1:30.
Many of the most popular Forex brokerages operating in the country are registered and regulated elsewhere in Europe, however, they have been rubber-stamped by the Bank of Lithuania. An example is the Cyprus-based Royal Forex Limited and its broker brand GMO Trading.
The most sought-after payment methods in Lithuania are the standard Visa and MasterCard, the mobile payment method Mobiamo and the Lithuanian company that has established payment network terminals in the country – Perlo Paslaugos.