By Daniel Hunter

British foreign direct investment (FDI) into Lithuania has nearly doubled in three years ahead of the country's entry into the eurozone.

FDI was £175 million in 2013, up from £95m in 2010, according to Statistics Lithuania.

The UK is the second largest investor into the fast-developing country, which has the fastest growing economy of the Baltic States. It comes ahead of Lithuania's entry into the eurozone which is due to take place on 1 January 2015.

There is growing interest from British companies in the country, which has some of the most liberal economic policies in the EU and is forecast to be one of the three fastest-growing European countries until 2017.

Businesses that invest in the country can benefit from a six-year break from corporation tax in one of the Special Economic Zones in the country and a well-educated, English speaking population: an ideal location to trade with the CIS, Baltic States and Western Europe.

The country is expected to be the last new member of the Eurozone for a decade, or even longer, representing an investment opportunity which is unlikely to be repeated for around 10 years.

Hundreds of British companies have invested in the country over the last few years including Barclays and GlaxoSmithKline.

Arvydas Arnasius, Managing Director of Invest Lithuania, a government agency which offers guidance to investors, said: “One of the main reasons why Lithuania presents such an attractive destination for UK investment is that it is an advantageous environment for businesses, and one that is easy to adapt to.

“Lithuania has a highly educated workforce, with 93% of the population with a secondary or higher degree — the best in the EU. It is easy for businesses not only to find skilled workers but also to set up operations, thanks to Lithuania’s high-quality infrastructure as well some of the lowest tax rates in the EU, as well as appealing economic incentives. ”

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