Biography

I was born on May 16 in 1963 in Juodšiliai, Vilnius area. My father Petras was a worker at one of the companies of the town and my mother Marijona was a nurse at the local hospital. My few years older sister is a teacher.

I was growing in the environment where I could often hear not only Lithuanian but also Russian and Polish languages; therefore I started primary school already knowing Polish and Russian. From the fourth grade I was studying at Vilnius 39th school with a focus on math. Secondary school studies were going great, I was a winner of many state-organized contests, I was good at both the exact sciences and the humanities, especially languages. I often recall the evenings spent together with my father listening to the American Voice Radio and discussing various political issues.

In 1981, I started Vilnius University, Faculty of Economics. During the studies, I was actively participating in the activity of the Students Scientific Society, as well as organizing various faculty events. This is where I met my future wife Gintarė who was studying in the same course. We got married after finishing studies in 1989. We have two sons, Vytenis and Vainius.

Gintare ir Petras 2017 Trakai 3

                                                                                                                                                 Me with my wife Gintarė ©Raimondas Savickas

After the studies, I started working at the Institute of Economics of the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences which at the time was led by Eduardas Vilkas.

In 1991, I started working as a Senior Specialist and later became the First Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. At the same time, I was actively participating in the law making. Together with colleagues economists we published two books on market economy. I was one of the founders of the Lithuanian Free Market Institute.

In 1992, I was studying diplomacy in Hoover Institution at Stanford University, USA. After the studies, I became the head of the Nordic States Division at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Not long after, I was entrusted with the establishment of the Lithuanian embassy in Finland, where I started working as Chargé d’Affaires ad Interim.

In 1994, after the establishment of the Lithuanian embassy in Finland, I became the youngest ambassador, at the time I was 31 year-old. While I was living in Finland, the country joined the European Union and I witnessed how the life of the country shifted after becoming a member of the EU.

In 1997, Lithuania started to consider the possibility of joining the EU.

In 1998, I came back to Lithuania and started working as an Advisor to the Prime Minister on Foreign Policy. I was responsible for establishing the European Committee under the Government of the Republic of Lithuania, which was established in May, 1998, when I became the main coordinator of the Lithuania‘s pre-accession process to the European Union.

In 1999, after resignation of the Prime Minister, I started working as a Chancellor of the Government.

In 2001, I became the Director General at the European Committee and the Chief Negotiator for Lithuania’s Membership of the European Union. We were making effort (and succeeded) for Lithuania to become a member of the EU during the first enlargement phase.

In January, 2004, I was appointed to be the Deputy Chancellor of the Government for the European Union affairs.

In 2004, I stood for the Presidential elections. It was an intense but extremely interesting period of life to experience.

Few months after, I stood for Parliamentary elections. I was elected in the single-member constituency of the Old Town area.

I was working in the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania for around ten years (2004-2014), almost two and a half terms.

In the beginning of 2006, together with the like-minded colleagues we founded the Liberals Movement of the Republic of Lithuania and I became the first Chairman of the party.

In 2012, I was one of the founders of the Union of European Federalists.

On May 25, 2014, I was elected to the European Parliament.

From July 1, 2014, I officially became a member of the European Parliament. I am a Vice-chair of the Group of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE), member of the Subcommittee on Human Rights (DROI) (coordinator of ALDE Group), member of the Committee on Foreign Affairs (AFET), Chair of the Delegation for relations with Afghanistan, initiator of an Informal Group “Friends of European Ukraine”. I am a strong supporter of Animal welfare policy, initiator of the movement “People for Animals”, I have created an Informal Group "Friends of Nuclear Energy Safety in the EU Neighbourhood" aiming for the shutdown of Astravets Nuclear Power Plant.

On March 21, 2018, I won the Foreign Affairs Award of the EU Parliament Magazine’s Annual MEP Awards 2018, which recognizes my policy efforts directed towards making the EU a stronger actor on the world stage and on promoting EU values, including democracy and human rights, across the globe.

I am glad that my actions are awarded by the state of Lithuania, France, Georgia, Ukraine and Finland. Everything I have already achieved, the reason I show initiative and do everyday work for a better future of my country and its people, makes a very important part of my life.