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History of the Chamber

Chronicle

1924 The Law of the Lithuanian Chambers of Commerce and Industry was passed
1925 The Chamber of Commerce and Industry was opened in Kaunas
1936 „Vyriausybės Žinios“ published the Law of the Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Crafts
1939 Ceremonial opening of the building of the Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Crafts
1940 The activities of Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Crafts were suspended
1944 The  building of the Chamber was nationalised
1973 The branch - office of the SSRS Chamber of Commerce and Industry was opened in Vilnius
1990 Restoration of the independent Republic of Lithuania
1991 The process of restoration of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry was restarted
1991 The  Regional Chamber of Commerce and Industry started operating
1992 The Association of Lithuanian Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Crafts was established
1992 The Baltic Sea Chambers Association was established and one of the founders is Kaunas CCIC
1993 The  Chamber‘s first newsletter „Rūmų Žinios“ was published
1995 The Parliament of the Republic of Lithuania passed the Law of the Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Crafts 
1996 The Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Crafts was established
1996  The begining of implementation of the activities of international projects
1997 A new law of Vacational Training was passed. Due to that, the Vacational Training Department of Kaunas CCIC was given the delegated functions by the Lithuanian Labour Market Educational Office  under the Ministry of Labour and Social Security
2000  Kaunas Regional Development Agency was established and one of the founders is Kaunas CCIC
2001 EIC opened and the process of Eurointegration started
2004 Eurpean Union membership was started
2004 Public Institution Technopolis was established and one of the founders is Kaunas CCIC
2008 Launch of Enterprise Europe Network
2012 Kaunas city municipality together with Kaunas CCIC and other stakeholders established the first Business Council in Lithuania. 

The first Chamber of Commerce in Lithuania was established by the Lithuanian President Aleksandras Stulginskis in Kaunas on 18 June 1925. The Chamber (since 1936 Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Crafts) functioned according to the Law adopted by Seimas (Parliament) and later by the President. This Law was based on the public law system. At that time the Chamber was subordinate to the Government: the Chairman of the Chamber was appointed by the President of the Republic of Lithuania and one third of the members were appointed by the Minister of Finance, who controlled the activities of the Chamber. The Chamber represented the interests of Lithuanian trade and industrial, credit and co-operative enterprises in Lithuania and abroad.

In 1940 the Soviet authorities prohibited the activity of the Chamber and closed it. However, since 1973 the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Lithuanian SSR, which was the part of the total system of Chambers of Commerce and Industry in the Soviet Union, operated in Vilnius. Needless to say, that it was only an imitation of the real work of Chambers of Commerce.

Far-reaching economic and political changes took place in 1991 when the Soviet Union finally recognized Lithuanian independence. The year of 1991 witnessed the beginning of the formation of the system of the European model Chambers of Commerce and Industry.

The process of the restoration of the institution of the Chamber of Commerce began as a result of which Kaunas Regional Chamber of Commerce was established. In 1996 Kaunas Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Crafts regained its original name.

Lithuania was one of the first post-Soviet countries which underwent the essential changes for approaching international standards. Primarily, the system of the Regional Chambers of Commerce and Industry was established. The Association of Lithuanian Chambers of Commerce and Industry was registered at the Ministry of Economics of the Republic of Lithuania in September 1992. In November 1995 the Parliament passed the law on Chambers of Commerce, Industry and Crafts.

Today Lithuanian Chambers are the only business self governing organisations operating under the law. The Chambers are non-governmental business and industry organisations, which have already gained wide international acknowledgement. They are the members of such organisations as the International Chamber of Commerce in Paris, the Association of European Chambers of Commerce and Industry (EUROCHAMBRES) and the Association of the Baltic Sea Chambers of Commerce. Membership of the Lithuanian Chambers in these organisations creates favourable conditions for fostering the participation of Lithuania in Europe and in the world.

Kaunas Chamber is a modern, innovative, toward thinking, membership - based business support organisation that can help rise the challanges and demands that today‘s business environment provides.