Gitanas Nausėda

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Gitanas Nausėda
Gitanas Nauseda crop.png
Nausėda in 2018
5th President of Lithuania
Assumed office
12 July 2019
Prime MinisterSaulius Skvernelis
Ingrida Šimonytė
Preceded byDalia Grybauskaitė
Personal details
Born (1964-05-19) 19 May 1964 (age 58)
Klaipėda, Lithuania
Political partyIndependent
(m. 1990)
Residence(s)Presidential Palace (official)
Alma materVilnius University
  • Economist
  • politician
Salary€70000[1][2] (annual, after tax)

Gitanas Nausėda (born 19 May 1964) is a Lithuanian economist, politician and banker who has served as President of Lithuania since 2019. He was previously director of monetary policy at the Bank of Lithuania from 1996 until 2000 and chief economist to the chairman of SEB bankas from 2008 until 2018.[3] Nausėda ran as an independent in the 2019 presidential election, which he won with over 66% of the vote in the runoff.

Early life and education[edit]

From 1982 to 1987 he studied in Vilnius University, Faculty of Industrial Economics and from 1987 to 1989 in the Faculty of Economics.[4]

From 1990 to 1992 he did a practice at the University of Mannheim in Germany under the DAAD scholarship. He defended his PhD thesis "Income Policy Under Inflation and Stagflation" in 1993.[5] Since 2009 he is an associate professor at Vilnius University Business School.[3][6]

Professional and political career[edit]

Having completed his studies, from 1992 to 1993 he worked for the Research Institute for Economics and Privatization. From 1993 to 1994 he worked for the Lithuanian Competition Council as a head of the Financial Markets Department. From 1994 to 2000 he worked at the Bank of Lithuania, initially in the department regulating the commercial banks and later as a director of the Monetary Policy Department. From 2000 to 2008 he was a chief economist and adviser to the chairman of AB Vilniaus Bankas. From 2008 to 2018 he was the financial analyst as well as chief adviser and later the chief economist for the SEB bankas president.[3]

In 2004, he supported the election campaign of the former Lithuanian president Valdas Adamkus.

Presidency (2019–present)[edit]

Gitanas Nausėda meeting with the Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in Vilnius

On 17 September 2018, Nausėda announced his candidacy for the 2019 Lithuanian presidential election.[7] He finished just 2,000 votes behind former Finance Minister Ingrida Šimonytė in the first round, and defeated her in the runoff with 66 percent of the vote.

He was officially inaugurated on 12 July.[8] Nausėda presented acting Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis's candidacy to continue his duties on 18 July.[9] By the time he had spent a month in office, Nausėda was considered to be the most trusted politician in Lithuania according to polls conducted by the Lithuanian National Radio and Television (LRT).[10]

Foreign policy[edit]

Nausėda (left) meets with US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin in February 2022


In April 2020, President Nausėda and Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko had their nations' first presidential tête-à-tête in 10 years.[11] Following the Lukashenko government's crackdown on protesters after the disputed 2020 Belarusian presidential elections (which were widely regarded as unfree and unfair)[12] and the resulting protests, Belarusian opposition candidate Svetlana Tikhanovskaya fled to Lithuania.[13] Nausėda's leadership during the crisis has been noted for being one that augmented Lithuania's role among European Union nations.[14] On 12 August, he ordered that Lithuania open its borders to all Belarusians for humanitarian purposes.[15] That day, he also presented a plan on the settlement of the crisis, being supported by Latvia and Poland, which consisted of three points that included a call for the creation of a national council from the Belarusian Government and civilian society. In an interview with Sky News on 13 August, he declared Lukashenko as "no longer the legitimate leader".[16]

Nausėda has been critical of the safety of the Astravets Nuclear Power Plant in Belarus.[17] In May 2020, during a conference call with Armenian Premier Nikol Pashinyan, he called on Armenia to share its experience with the Armenian Nuclear Power Plant to Belarus over concerns over the Astravets Nuclear Power Plant.[18]

On 23 May 2021, in the immediate aftermath of the hijacking of Ryanair flight 4578, where two journalists outspoken against the Lukashenko regime in Belarus were arrested, Nausėda called for EU recognition of Belarusian airspace as “unsafe for civilian aviation” and the immediate release of the arrested journalist Roman Protasevich. By the evening of May 23 Nausėda has secured the support of both the leaders of Latvia and Estonia in recognising Belarusian airspace as unsafe to enter.


Nausėda has made multiple efforts to engage in better relations with Poland, being seen as a personal ally of the Polish leadership.[19] On 16 July, four days after his inauguration, he visited Warsaw to meet with President Andrzej Duda in his first foreign visit as president.[20] During the visit, there were calls for him to establish a more personal relationship with the country.[21] He also rejected any attempt by European Union leaders to sanction Poland for its actions in relation to the Supreme Court of Poland and the rest of the country's judiciary.[22] On 22 November, Nausėda and Duda, as well as the First Lady of Poland Agata Kornhauser-Duda participated in the state funeral of commanders and participants in the 1863–1864 uprising against Tsarist rule in Vilnius.[23] During his visit to Vilnius, Duda highlighted the Central European nations' unity importance for their independence.[24] In January 2020, Nausėda joined Duda in pulling out of 5th World Holocaust Forum, who criticized the event for giving the speaking slot to Russian president Putin, who has himself criticized Poland's WWII history by engaging in a historical revisionist campaign.[25]


During a meeting in Berlin with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in August, Nausėda urged her to maintain sanctions against Russia.[26] In an interview with LRT on 14 August, he reiterated past positions that a potential meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin would be "pointless" due to the fact that Lithuania sees "the true danger" and "risks" of being on the border with Russia.[27]


In November 2019, he referred to the Steinmeier formula suggested by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky as a solution to the Russo-Ukrainian War as being "more profitable for Russia than Ukraine".[28]


In January 2022, Nausėda criticized the government's creation of a de facto embassy of Taiwan with the inclusion of "Taiwanese" in the name, an act interpreted by the People's Republic of China as a breach of the One-China policy and resulted in a degradation in political and economic relationships.[29] The President clarified that while he does not object to the opening of the embassy, he was not consulted on the naming decision.[30]

Relations with the Šimonytė Government[edit]

During the 2020 parliamentary elections Ingrida Šimonytė, former opponent of Nausėda in the 2019 presidential election, was elected to the position of prime minister.[31] He publicly broke with the government's decision to create a defacto embassy of Taiwan bearing the country's name in the title.[30]

International trips as president[edit]

List of foreign visits by Gitanas Nauseda
Date Country City Reason
16 July 2019  Poland Warsaw Talks with President Andrzej Duda[20]
23 July 2019  Latvia Riga Talks with President Egils Levits[32]
14–15 August 2019  Germany Berlin Talks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel[33]
15 August 2019  Germany Berlin Talks with Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier[34]
20 August 2019  Estonia Tallinn Talks with President Kersti Kaljulaid[35]
1 September 2019  Poland Warsaw 80th anniversary of the September campaign
4–5 September 2019  EU Brussels European Conference
22–26 September 2019  United Nations New York City United Nations General Assembly[36]
17–18 October 2019  EU Brussels European Conference
21–24 October 2019  Japan Tokyo Enthronement of Japanese Emperor Naruhito[37]
5 November 2019  Finland Helsinki Talks with President Sauli Niinistö
7 November 2019   Vatican Vatican City Talks with Pope Francis
7–8 November 2019  Italy Rome Talks with Italian leaders
3–4 December 2019  United Kingdom London See 2019 London summit
20 January 2020   Switzerland Davos See World Economic Forum
27 January 2020  Poland Oświęcim 75th Anniversary of the Liberation of Auschwitz
11 February 2020  EU Brussels Talks with president of the European Council Charles Michel
14 February 2020  Germany Munich Munich Security Conference 2020
15 July 2020  Poland Grunwald 610th Anniversary of the Battle of Grunwald and talks with President Andrzej Duda
17-21 July 2020  EU Brussels European Conference
1-2 September 2020  EU Brussels European Conference
15-16 September 2020  EU Brussels European Conference
10-11 December 2020  EU Brussels European Conference
17-19 March 2021  Ukraine Kyiv Talks with President Volodymyr Zelensky
3 May 2021  Poland Warsaw 230th Anniversary of the Constitution of 3 May
6-8 May 2021  Portugal Lisbon, Porto European Leaders' Meeting
13-14 May 2021  Moldova Chișinău Talks with President Maia Sandu
24-25 May 2021  EU Brussels European Conference
10-11 June 2021  Georgia Tbilisi Talks with President Salome Zourabichvili
13 June 2021  EU Brussels Talks with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan
14 June 2021  EU Brussels NATO Conference and talks with United States President Joe Biden
15-16 June 2021  Sweden Stockholm Talks with King Carl XVI Gustaf, Speaker Andreas Norlén and Prime Minister Stefan Löfven
23-24 August 2021  Ukraine Kyiv Attended Crimea Platform and Kyiv Independence Day Parade
15-16 September 2021  Germany
20-24 September 2021  United States New York, Chicago
5-6 October 2021  Slovenia
21-22 October 2021  Belgium
1-2 November 2021  United Kingdom Glasgow
1-2 November 2021  France
28 July 2022  Ukraine Kyiv [38]

Nausėda has welcomed many foreign leaders and dignitaries to Lithuania since taking office, including Latvian President Egils Levits, Polish President Andrzej Duda, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and Canadian Governor-General Julie Payette.

Personal life[edit]

Nausėda's father, Antanas Nausėda (born 1929), is an engineer. His mother Stasė Nausėdienė (1932–2014) was a physics and mathematics teacher from the village of Lazdininkai. His sister Vilija (born 1959) is an economist. In 1990, he married Diana Nausėdienė. They have two daughters.[39] In addition to his native Lithuanian, Gitanas Nausėda speaks English, German and Russian.[40] Since 1997 he has been collecting antique books.[41]


Private house in a regional park[edit]

Environmentalists have criticized Gitanas Nausėda for building a modern private household in Pavilniai Regional Park, nearby Pūčkoriai exposure—a unique geological object declared to be a nature monument in 1974. Then-advisor for SEB bankas, Nausėda replied by stating that he had acquired a legal permit for such a construction to take place here. The Directorate of the Pavilniai Regional Park tried to fight back against this ruling, but to no avail. "It's a shame that people till this day can't admit being wrong and that the court had acknowledged this as well. That time I showed good will and did not demand the court to ask money from them for a lawsuit that lasted for 2–3 years. But it seems people don't get that", Nausėda reacted. According to the director of the Directorate of the Pavilniai Regional Park Vida Petiukonienė, even though experts had confirmed that the permit to construct a modern house in the park is not in accordance with the law, the court had ordered to reconcile the project. "This is the reality of life, this is how things work in this world, we can only feel sorry. The situation we are in is one of those ridiculous instances, a mockery of the country, laws, and people who go to work in order to commit to these laws. In other words, us", Petiukonienė has commented.[42]


National honours[edit]

Foreign honours[edit]

Honorary doctorates[edit]

  •  Japan: Gifu University (24 October 2019)


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  2. ^ "2020-ųjų biudžetas: kiek į rankas gaus pensininkas, mokytojas, prezidentas". 17 December 2019.
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  11. ^ "The President discussed the Eastern Partnership and joint efforts in fighting COVID-19 with the President of Belarus". The President discussed the Eastern Partnership and joint efforts in fighting COVID-19 with the President of Belarus | President of the Republic of Lithuania.
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  17. ^ "Baltic states moving towards agreement on Belarusian electricity ban, president says". 9 July 2020.
  18. ^ "The President encouraged Armenia to share its nuclear safety experience with Belarus". Retrieved 14 August 2020.
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  20. ^ a b G.Nausėda Varšuvoje pamatė visišką sutarimą su Lenkija, ES sankcijoms kaimynei nepritartų,, 16 July 2019
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  34. ^ " Der Bundespräsident / Terminkalender / Gespräch mit dem Präsidenten der Republik Litauen".
  35. ^ Lietuvos ir Estijos Prezidentų susitikime – dėmesys energetiniam saugumui Baltijos regione, LR Prezidento kanceliarija, 20 August 2019
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  37. ^ Prezidentas vyks į Japonijos Imperatoriaus inauguracijos ceremoniją, LR Prezidento kanceliarija, 18 October 2019
  38. ^
  39. ^ D. Nausėdienė: Gitanas man pateikė viliojantį pasiūlymą, kurio negalėjau atsisakyti Delfi, 31 October 2015
  40. ^ G.Nausėdos kelias į ekonomiką aplaistytas ašaromis Delfi, 24 February 2010
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External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by President of Lithuania