Russia's CBR ups rate by 50bp to 5.5%, will keep hiking

bne IntelliNews June 11, 2021

The board of the Central Bank of Russia (CBR) at the policy meeting of June 11 resolved to increase the key interest rate by 50 basis points (bp) to 5.5%, in line with expectations.

Belarus is the “North Korea” of Europe, says US diplomat

bne IntelliNews June 11, 2021

The barred US ambassador to Belarus, Julie Fisher, called Belarus the “North Korea of Europe” in testimony before a US Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing.

ING: So what is a greenium and how do we get to it?

bne IntelliNews June 11, 2021

The existence of a "greenium" is mostly justified by higher demand for green bonds. We estimate the greenium for each curve separately, ensuring it is not polluted by other factors such as sector or maturity.

Russian internet major Yandex outlines ESG goals

bne IntelliNews June 11, 2021

Among Yandex's ESG priorities are reducing its carbon footprint, mainly from data centres and fuel use.

COMMENT: Time to end Putin's impunity

Jeff Lovitt and Jan Piekło June 10, 2021

The price faced by Russia for aggression must be too high for the Kremlin to countenance, and this is the message that Biden should deliver to Putin – and act upon.

Russian court official rules Navalny organisation extremist, as protest support dies away

bne IntelliNews June 10, 2021

A Moscow court officially outlawed opposition activist Alexey Navalny’s organisation and branded it “extremist”, effectively putting it on a par with a terrorist organisation, on June 9.

bneGREEN: IEA calls for $1 trillion of annual investment into clean energy in developing economies

Richard Lockhart in Edinburgh June 9, 2021

Private finance is crucial if emerging economies are not to be left behind in the race to net zero, the IEA warns.

International Crisis Group releases new field-researched report on Karabakh

Neil Hauer in Yerevan June 9, 2021

ICG says the "fragility" of the ceasefire has already been highlighted by tensions that "flared in mid-May as Armenia and Azerbaijan disputed new positions established by Azerbaijani forces" close to their shared border.

ING: The corporate premium in green finance

Padhraic Garvey is ING’s Regional Head of Research in New York, Benjamin Schroeder is a senior rates strategist at ING in Amsterdam June 9, 2021

There is a cost saving to issuing Green. It varies according to circumstances, but the baseline assumption now is for green yields to be below vanilla ones; not by much, but it's persistent enough.

No football frenzy in Emerging Europe's Euro 2020 host cities

bne IntelliNews June 8, 2021

Host cites to raise their profiles just as international travel starts to revive, but little hope of the usual tourism and consumer spending bonanza.

BneGREEN: Energy Storage develops a low-cost, long-duration energy storage unit based on mineral salts, not lithium batteries

bne IntelliNews June 8, 2021

Australian energy storage specialist, Energy Storage, has unveiled its next generation low-cost, long-duration, energy storage unit that the company says offers the same sort of performance as hydro, but is completely mobile.

Russia to make Far North region of Murmansk a green-tech testing ground

Ben Aris in Berlin June 8, 2021

Russia’s Far North region of Murmansk will become a testing ground for “green” technologies as the Kremlin starts to ramp up its efforts to tackle the climate crisis after a slow start.

Biden agrees to meet Zelenskiy, but after the Putin summit

Ben Aris in Berlin June 8, 2021

US President Joe Biden has invited Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy to meet at the White House in July, during a phone conversation between the two presidents on June 7.

Russia’s economy will grow 4% this year, says Putin

bne IntelliNews June 8, 2021

Russia’s economy will expand by 4% this year after contracting less than the international economy a year earlier, President Vladimir Putin said at the St Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF)

Armenia and Azerbaijan suspend “corridor” talks

Joshua Kucera for Eurasianet June 7, 2021

Yerevan said there was no point in discussing new transportation routes with Azerbaijan while there was so much tension along their border. Baku’s response was curiously muted.

MOSCOW BLOG: Primary rehearsal

Andras Toth-Czifra in New York June 6, 2021

The governing United Russia Party held its “primaries” in the last week of May. The votes were tallied and a party congress will, on June 19, approve a list of candidates for the September Duma elections.

bneGREEN: Coal bandits

bne IntelliNews June 4, 2021

The IEA has said that the road to net zero by 2050 is “narrow but still achievable,” so long as there is no more investment in new coal projects, in order to limit global warming to 1.5C.

Russia to reduce its dollar holdings in its NWF rainy day fund to zero

bne IntelliNews June 4, 2021

Russia will entirely remove the dollar from the basket of currencies in its National Welfare Fund (NWF) as the Kremlin’s drive to de-dollarise continues to gather momentum.

Russia’s independent VTimes shuts down after being branded a “foreign agent” by the Kremlin

bne IntelliNews June 4, 2021

The well respected and widely read VTimes independent news service announced its closure on June 3 after the Justice Ministry designated it as a “foreign agent” last month, the latest in a string of independent news organisations to be attacked.

Russia overcoming Sputnik V production bottlenecks, output capacity rises to 30mn doses a month

bne IntelliNews June 4, 2021

Russia is starting to overcome production bottlenecks of its Sputnik V coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine as output capacity tops 30mn doses a month.