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Lithuania adopted a new Labour Code at the beginning of January 2017 to liberalise the country’s job market. This legislation introduced controversial changes, including zero-hours employment contracts and making dismissals easier.

In December 2016, laws on crowdfunding were introduced alongside rules that allow banks to use electronic identification of customers and the government also brought in new peer-to-peer lending regulations in February 2016. Bank consolidation was another key trend in finance, with Nordea and DNB’s plans to merge their Baltic operations set to become one of the market’s largest deals.

Firms continued their move towards a Pan-Baltic structure: Balčiūnas & Grajauskas rebranded to Leadell Balciunas & Grajauskas after joining a network with Leadell Pilv and Leadell Fogels, Vitols & Paipa in Estonia and Latvia, respectively; Dominas Derling formed an alliance with Kronbergs Cukste Derling in Latvia and Advokaadiburoo Derling OU in Estonia; and Primus, Attorneys at Law entered the Lithuanian market by joining forces with Law Firm Varul’s Vilnius office.

Law firm Venckute&Karnickas also entered the market and Cobalt completed its merger with Borenius in 2016.

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