Southeast Europe / News

Lithuania pays Guantanamo ‘forever prisoner’ $113,000 over CIA torture

Linas Jegelevicius in Vilnius January 12, 2022

Abu Zubaydah is reportedly still in Guantanamo Bay, where he has been held without being charged for the past two decades.

New faces but no break from the past expected from North Macedonia’s government in waiting

Valentina Dimitrievska in Skopje January 11, 2022

Opposition VMRO-DPMNE calls for snap election despite Dimitar Kovacevski's pledges to tackle energy crisis and solve dispute with Bulgaria to unblock EU accession process.

Dovish Romanian central bank raises interest rate by modest 25bp to 2.0%

Iulian Ernst in Bucharest January 11, 2022

The 25bp rate hike was smaller than analysts anticipated, and left Romania with the lowest refinancing rate among its peers.

Heavy EU spending failed to improve rule of law in Western Balkans

bne IntelliNews January 10, 2022

Over €700mn spent to little effect in candidate and prospective candidate countries, finds European Court of Auditors.

Bosnian Serbs celebrate unconstitutional Republika Srpska Day

Eldar Dizdarevic in Sarajevo January 10, 2022

Controversial celebration took place as Bosnian Serb politicians are seeking to remove Republika Srpska from state-level institutions, prompting fears about the breakup of Bosnia.

Albanian police use tear gas to disperse protest at opposition Democrats’ HQ

bne IntelliNews January 8, 2022

Supporters of Democrats’ former leader Sali Berisha forced their way into building as power struggle with current leadership turns violent.

Romania’s central bank expected to hike refinancing rate on January 10

Iulian Ernst in Bucharest January 7, 2022

The rate hike in Poland earlier this week encouraged expectations for a similar move in Bucharest, where the BNR has been more cautious until now.

Spread of Omicron pushes coronavirus infections to all-time highs in parts of Southeast Europe

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia January 6, 2022

Albania and Croatia reported record numbers of COVID-19 infections while other countries are close to records set in previous waves of the pandemic.

US imposes new sanctions on Bosnian Serb leader Dodik

Eldar Dizdarevic in Sarajevo January 6, 2022

Fresh sanctions follow move by Dodik to remove Bosnia's Serb entity from state institutions, potentially leading to the breakup of the country.

Serbian media tycoon takes over Southampton football club

Eldar Dizdarevic in Sarajevo January 5, 2022

United Media founder Dragan Solak bought football club from Chinese real estate magnate Gao Jisheng in £100mn deal.

Kosovo faces worst energy crisis in a decade

Valentina Dimitrievska in Skopje January 3, 2022

Daily power cuts planned for the next 60 days to save electricity.

Montenegro’s biggest industrial producer KAP shuts down after energy price hike

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia January 2, 2022

Rising electricity prices make aluminium smelter's production uneconomic and its owner was unable to reach an agreement with power company EPCG.

North Macedonia’s president gives mandate to SDSM’s new leader to form government

Valentina Dimitrievska in Skopje December 30, 2021

Dimitar Kovacevski's main challenge will be to find a solution with neighbouring Bulgaria to unblock North Macedonia's EU accession process.

Serbia suspends plans for Rio Tinto’s lithium mine

Eldar Dizdarevic in Sarajevo December 17, 2021

Plans to build huge mine that would have turned Serbia into Europe's top lithium producer on hold after mass protests.

Erdogan follows latest ‘unbelievable’ rate cut with 50% boost to Turkey’s minimum wage

bne IntelIiNews December 17, 2021

Analysts warn that amid lira crisis move to hike Turks’ earnings could add to rampant inflation. Market fears hyperinflation will take hold.

Romanian chemicals group Chimcomplex mulls taking over Rompetrol

Iulian Ernst in Bucharest December 16, 2021

Chemical holding outlines development plans including ambitions to take over Romania's biggest refinery Petromidia, owned by Rompetrol.

Romania to postpone euro adoption target until 2029

Iulian Ernst in Bucharest December 16, 2021

Romania has repeatedly put back its target for euro adoption, missing a window of opportunity in 2015-17 when it met all the nominal convergence criteria set by the Maastricht Treaty.

Academic close to Erdogan says Turkey should prepare for state of emergency due to economic crisis

bne IntelIiNews December 16, 2021

Professor walks back comments but fears circulate that move could be made to prepare for a sudden and unjust snap election.

Top EU court says Bulgaria must issue ID to baby girl with two mothers

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia December 15, 2021

Bulgaria does not recognise same-sex marriage and refused to name both as mothers in a national birth certificate.

Crisis-hit Turkish lira takes high-volatility rollercoaster ride featuring new all-time low

bne IntelIiNews December 14, 2021

Day saw a stomach-churning descent of 7%.