Features

VOX: The nationalisation of PrivatBank

Ben Aris in London June 17, 2019

The independence of the National Bank of Ukraine is under attack says its former governor Valaria Gontareva, who was responsible for carrying out sweeping reforms and nationalising PrivatBank.

Belarus' Plan B to avoid economic crisis

Ben Aris in London June 16, 2019

The IMF warned Minsk last November that it better have a “Plan B” ready if it could not persuade Moscow to pay it compensation for a change in the way oil exports are taxed. It's got one.

WEEKEND WHAMMY: Moody’s cuts Turkey deeper into junk

Akin Nazli in Belgrade June 15, 2019

Ratings agency says risk of another balance of payments crisis is rising, meaning the risk of a government default down the line is also increasing.

Broadcaster warns of “slow strangulation” of media plurality in Serbia

Clare Nuttall in Glasgow June 14, 2019

The owner of N1, one of the few remaining mainstream independent media outlets in the Balkan country, has documented numerous incidents of hate speech and threats of violence against its journalists.

Western Balkans buck downward global trend in FDI

Clare Nuttall in Glasgow June 12, 2019

EU accession candidates Serbia and North Macedonia see largest increase in FDI inflows in Western Balkans — but investments in the region are vulnerable to political instability, says new report from wiiw.

Quant funds keeping It simple and effective

Ben Aris in Berlin June 10, 2019

Yesterday’s quantitative investing has become today’s algorithmic trading, which has become more and more complicated. The best way to make these funds grow is to keep them simple

Tokayev declared Kazakh election winner as thoughts turn to whether new protest movement can snowball

bne IntelliNews June 10, 2019

Nazarbayev’s handpicked successor takes 71% of vote marred by hundreds of arrests. Demonstrators who claim it was a fake contest push Wake Up, Qazaqstan campaign.

Economic as well as political dismay fuelled Kazakhstan’s ‘rigged’ election protests

Nizom Khodjayev in Nur-Sultan June 9, 2019

Kazakhs have long felt they’ve not been getting a fair deal from their oil-rich state. Officials raided the ‘rainy day’ fund ahead of the vote, but it was far from enough to quell the anger.

Radiant fatherland? Pull the other one

Nizom Khodjayev in Nur-Sultan June 7, 2019

Kazakhstan’s choreographed presidential election will on June 9 distract from brewing discontent. Detention of activist for holding a blank banner nicely summed up the dispiriting reality.

Prague rocked by the biggest protests for democracy since 1989 demanding Prime Minister Andrej Babis's resignation

Nelly Tomcikova in Prague June 6, 2019

Wenceslas Square in the heart of Prague, a symbol of the fall of communism in 1989, hosted the biggest protests in the history of independent Czech Republic on June 4, as crowds demanded the resignation of Prime Minister Andrej Babis (ANO).

Poland’s feuding political camps celebrate 30 years since the fall of Communism by preaching to their choirs

Wojciech Kosc in Warsaw June 5, 2019

The 30th anniversary of the partly free election that marked the end of the 45-year Communist rule in Poland was an overwhelmingly partisan affair.

ANALYSIS: Turkey technically exits recession but analysts fear double-dip's ahead

Akin Nazli in Belgrade May 31, 2019

Bounce may not reflect underlying recovery. Trigger appears to be big credit expansion that destabilised the BoP and weakened the lira.

It’s now or never for an Uzbek gas boom

Kanat Shaku in Tashkent May 31, 2019

Tashkent has big ambitions in hydrocarbons, petroleum products, petrochemicals and pipelines. It is opening up to foreign investors. But there are still tensions with remaining elements of the planned economy.

Southeast Europe’s banking sector gets new investor geography

Clare Nuttall in Glasgow May 30, 2019

Hungary’s OTP in, Greek banks out, and a new crop of privatisations coming up in Serbia and Slovenia.

The Russian economy is stagnating

Ben Aris in Berlin May 27, 2019

The Russian economy is stagnating and President Vladimir Putin’s plan to revitalise it with the 12 national projects is off to a very slow start. Growth was only 0.8% in 1Q19 and accelerating it to 3% in 2021 looks increasingly unlikely.

Eastern Europe's sustainable fashion designers embrace old traditions and new technologies

Clare Nuttall in Bucharest May 26, 2019

Solo designers and small creative companies are producing sustainable fashion lines in Central and Eastern Europe, embracing new technologies to reduce the industry’s environmental footprint and insisting on good conditions for their workers.

ANALYSIS: Turkey’s net FX reserves excluding swaps fell to minus as of May 17

Akin Nazli in Belgrade May 23, 2019

bne IntelliNews’ calculations show the precarious situation the central bank faces as the unrelenting battle to defend the lira takes an alarming toll. No wonder Turks fear for their hard currency savings.

Why are Russian stocks so cheap?

Ben Aris in Berlin May 22, 2019

Investors into Russian stocks have almost given up seeing any of the cash the country’s leading companies generate. Valuations are in the basement, as investors don't believe the management will share their billions of dollars in revenue.

Progress made towards creating of Russia's 5G network

Vladimir Kozlov in Moscow May 22, 2019

Russia has made another step towards launching the fifth generation of cellular mobile communications (5G), as state-controlled telecoms operator Rostelecom transferred companies that tested the relevant technology to its subsidiary, Bashinformsvyaz.

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