Southeast Europe / News

First coronavirus case confirmed in Croatia

bne IntelliNews February 25, 2020

Croatia and other states from the region were already on alert following the rapid spread of the infection in several parts of northern Italy.

“Mini-Schengen” founders urge neighbours to join

Clare Nuttall in London February 25, 2020

The prime ministers of Albania, North Macedonia and Serbia urged their neighbours to join the initiative to eliminate obstacles to the free movement of people, goods, services and capital.

Blow for Turkey’s Halkbank as US federal court rejects appeal move on Iran sanctions evasion indictment

bne IntellIiNews February 23, 2020

Petition for a stay in the criminal proceeding refused. Prosecutors maintain lender is "fugitive".

Bulgarian PM Borissov reportedly targeted by Spanish money laundering probe

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia February 23, 2020

The case concerns a luxury house in Spain occupied by Borislava Yovcheva, a former model linked to the Bulgarian prime minister, reported El Periodico.

Turkey’s banks ‘hire Ernst & Young to analyse forming asset management company for billions in bad debt’

bne IntellIiNews February 21, 2020

Lira remains under pressure amid economic anxiety and worries over course of Syria and Libya conflicts. Erdogan set to speak to Putin on Idlib standoff.

Turkey ‘asks US for Patriot missiles to help counter Russia-backed Syrian troops’

bne IntellIiNews February 20, 2020

Trump’s latest word on Syria is that he and “tough guy” Erdogan “are working together on seeing what can be done”.

Russian investor to give up Chisinau International Airport

Iulian Ernst in Bucharest February 20, 2020

Speculation is swirling in Moldova about the reasons behind Russian billionaire Andrei Goncearenko's announcement he is ready to sell his stake in the operator of Moldova's main airport.

Hot spring looms in Albania as president urges people to rise up against government

bne IntelliNews February 19, 2020

President Ilir Meta has called on all Albanians to join mass protests against the government in March, signalling a return to the unrest that marked the first half of last year.

Joy as Turkish court acquits “Gezi park” defendant Kavala but tears as he's rearrested

bne IntelliNews February 18, 2020

After surprise verdict, pundits consider whether under-pressure Erdogan might want to see businessman and philanthropist free as a sop to the West.

US promises up to $1bn in energy infrastructure financing for Three Seas Initiative

Wojciech Kosc in Warsaw February 18, 2020

The financing will go primarily to strengthen energy security across the initiative’s countries, which consider it necessary to end, or at least reduce, dependence on Russia as an energy supplier.

Opposition party warns of possible run on the Bulgarian lev over delayed ERM2 entry

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia February 18, 2020

Prime Minister Boyko Borissov unexpectedly said his government will not push for entry into the Exchange Rate Mechanism, one of the key steps towards adoption of the euro.

Bosnia’s Dodik calls for RSexit

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia February 18, 2020

Milorad Dodik wants a "RSexit" secession referendum for Republika Srpska, as Bosnian Serb politicians say they will block the work of state-level institutions.

Romania ready to develop new nuclear reactor without foreign partners

Iulian Ernst in Bucharest February 18, 2020

Prime Minister Ludovic Orban announced last month that Bucharest will scrap its deal with China General Nuclear Power Corporation (CGN) to expand the Cernavoda nuclear power plant.

US attorney general ‘at Trump’s request made effort to help Turkey’s Halkbank sidestep indictment’

bne IntelliNews February 17, 2020

Turkish president Erdogan who has been implicated in the sanctions-busting affair in which lender is embroiled said to have pushed for White House action.

Serbia and Kosovo agree to restore railway, motorway links

Valentina Dimitrievska February 16, 2020

The new agreements, signed shortly after Belgrade and Pristina agreed to resume direct flights between their capitals, represent a breakthrough in relations — but the new government in Pristina has raised objections.

Fiat halts production in Serbian plant as coronavirus disrupts supply chains

bne IntelliNews February 16, 2020

Fiat is the first automaker to halt operations at a plant in Europe as a consequence of the coronavirus, but others are expected to follow.

Bosnia’s President Dodik renews threat for Republika Srpska secession referendum

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia February 16, 2020

Despite now being a member of Bosnia’s tripartite state-level presidency, Dodik has renewed his calls for the referendum that — if Bosnian Serbs voted to secede — could lead to the breakup of Bosnia and destabilisation of the region.

Turkcell prepaying club loan and intensifying cooperation with Huawei

Akin Nazli in Belgrade February 12, 2020

Telco to use Huawei Mobile Services app ecosystem developed after Donald Trump placed a ban on Chinese company using Google's Android.

Turkey’s top opposition party boycotts CNN Turk in protest at pro-government bias

bne IntelliNews February 12, 2020

CHP says channel sold to pro-Erdogan business group two years ago is "working like an advertising agency in line with the government's discourse".

Erdogan issues ultimatum to Syria

bne IntelliNews February 12, 2020

Warns Turkey will strike its Russian-backed forces if from now on even one Turkish soldier suffers “the smallest injury”.