Southeast Europe / Features

All to play for in Russian-Chinese backyard

bne IntelIiNews March 21, 2023

Russia and China will struggle for common policy on possible Russian soft underbelly Central Asia, Afghanistan, Mongolia, the vital Europe/Asia Caucasus crossroads, the Baltics, CEE and SEE.

A fresh face and dirty games in Montenegro’s presidential election

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia March 16, 2023

Longstanding ruler Milo Djukanovic is fighting off challenges from newcomer Europe Now’s candidate Jakov Milatovic and pro-Russian Andrija Mandic.

Has Southeast Europe come of age as an investment destination?

Clare Nuttall in Glasgow March 15, 2023

The Western Balkan countries are following the path established by Central Europe that emerged as a prominent manufacturing and services hub early in the transition period.

Combined economic and political pressure push Serbia towards sanctions decision

Clare Nuttall in Glasgow March 14, 2023

As economic and political pressure on Serbia to join Western sanctions on Russia grow, Serbian Economy Minister Rade Basta took the unexpected step of calling for Belgrade to impose sanctions.

Turkey cuts trade ties with Russia, Hungary to “rethink” relationship as Western pressure to end sanctions-busting mounts

Ben Aris in Berlin March 12, 2023

Turkey has abruptly stopped exporting goods to Russia and one of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s strongest advocates in Europe, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, has said that he might “rethink” his relations with Russia in the future.

Moldovans turn to tourism and online sex work to make ends meet

James C Pearce in Moscow March 10, 2023

Moldova is often painted as small, struggling and stuck between the East and West. Its tourism industry was no different, at least until 2020. It has since borne the brunt of three global crises and has the battle scars to show for it.

Bomb hoaxes disrupt education and daily life in North Macedonia

Valentina Dimitrievska in Skopje March 8, 2023

Thousands of fake bomb threats linked by officials to Ukraine war have disturbed the everyday lives of North Macedonia’s citizens for months, with schools being the main targets.

Gender gap persists in Emerging Europe’s industries of the future

Clare Nuttall in Glasgow March 8, 2023

Women are underrepresented in the growing ICT and green energy sectors.

Croatian retailer Studenac on acquisition spree in market ripe for consolidation

Clare Nuttall in Glasgow March 7, 2023

Studenac aims to become one of Croatia's top three grocery retailers and increase its market share to over 12% though a combination of organic growth and acquisitions.

Russia is successfully evading Western technology sanctions

bne IntelliNews March 6, 2023

Russia has managed to largely bypass Western sanctions on technology and semiconductor imports to supply itself with technology to keep its economy working and build sophisticated weapons.

Russomania slowly fades in Serbia as Putin’s hybrid war continues

Ann Smith in New York and bne IntelliNews reporters in Belgrade March 4, 2023

Falling living standards and first hand accounts from Russians and Ukrainians living in Serbia are starting to challenge Serbs’ allegiance to Russia.

Ukrainian refugees and Russian migrants bring economic benefits but also stresses to Emerging Europe

bne IntelliNews March 3, 2023

Looking forward to the end of the war, whenever it happens, policymakers are already speculating on how many of the refugees and migrants are likely to stay and how many will return.

Urals oil price is increasingly meaningless, allowing Russian-owned refineries in Europe to build up slush funds

Ben Aris in Berlin February 27, 2023

After the twin price cap sanctions were imposed on Russian oil exports, Ukraine’s supporters cheered as the price of the key Urals blend collapsed. The trouble is, Russian refineries in Europe make the price of Urals increasingly irrelevant.

How big is Russia's "ghost fleet" of oil tankers?

Ben Aris in Berlin February 26, 2023

How many ships are in Russia’s “ghost fleet” of tankers? No one has a clear idea: estimates run from 100 to 600 tankers depending on what you include in the fleet.

Tehran, Almaty live in fear of earthquake hell

bne IntelIiNews February 25, 2023

No-one can say for sure where the next Big One will hit.

Russia’s war in Ukraine has distorted global trade routes

bne IntelliNews February 21, 2023

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and related sanctions have distorted trade routes across the Eurasian continent.

15 years after independence, is Kosovo on the verge of a breakthrough?

Valentina Dimitrievska in Skopje February 16, 2023

Despite months of tensions and occasional violence between Kosovo Albanians and Serbs, there are hopes that Pristina may finally be heading for a negotiated settlement with Belgrade.

Rising EM debt and geopolitical tensions hurt China's BRI ambitions in Emerging Europe

Clare Nuttall in Glasgow February 16, 2023

Faced with governments struggling with high debt burdens in South Asia and Africa, and growing regulatory caution in Europe, China is increasing its focus on Central Asia, Fitch analysts said.

More gloom ahead as EBRD cuts 2023 growth forecasts

bne IntelliNews February 16, 2023

The EBRD lowered its forecasts for more than half its 36 countries of operation, anticipating average growth of just 2.1% this year.

Motorcycle assassinations emerge as latest phenomenon in Turkey

Akin Nazli in Belgrade February 11, 2023

Upsurge in gangsterism may be linked to unending “wealth amnesties” that attract foreign mafiosi to the country.