Southeast Europe / News

Sberbank extends additional $800mn in 7-year loans for Turkey's first nuclear plant

Akin Nazli in Belgrade November 17, 2021

Pace of construction said to have reached next level. But controversies at the building site have become a matter of everyday news for Turks.

Concerns Turkey could face another currency crisis ‘growing louder’ says Capital Economics

bne IntelIiNews November 16, 2021

The lira has crashed through psychologically important level of 10/$ following “continued obedience” of Turkish central bank to President Erdogan’s pressure for rate cuts.

Ministry reveals Montenegro massively overspent on motorway project that ramped up country’s debt

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia November 16, 2021

Two feasibility studies published by the capital investment ministry indicate Montenegro’s previous government borrowed at least $140mn more than the first priority stretch of the Bar-Boljare motorway should have cost.

Slovenia launches mass mobilisation of medical staff to fight pandemic

Valentina Dimitrievska in Skopje November 16, 2021

Shortages of doctors and nurses reported as latest wave of pandemic overwhelms Slovenian hospitals.

EU slaps Belarus with new sanctions for stoking migration crisis at Poland’s border

Wojciech Kosc in Warsaw November 16, 2021

A list of people and entities to be hit by asset freezes and travel bans is expected to be finalised in the coming weeks.

Top opposition politicians back protesting farmers in Albania

bne IntelliNews November 15, 2021

Cash-strapped farmers hit by soaring energy and fertiliser costs are demanding Edi Rama’s government rethink the 2022 budget to give them more support.

Change Continues to start coalition talks after winning Bulgarian snap election

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia November 15, 2021

Bulgaria’s newest political player has the chance to form a government if it manages to bring together a diverse group of smaller parties.

As lira carnage mounts BBVA moves to snap up rest of Turkish bank Garanti

Akin Nazli in Belgrade November 15, 2021

Spain-based group sees chance to acquire stake at bargain price. Some critics worry Turkey’s economic distress means foreign investors will bag too many assets on the cheap.

Change Continues and Gerb neck-and-neck in Bulgarian parliament election

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia November 14, 2021

Politicians from both parties say they will try to form a government as exit polls indicate a very tight race.

Disappearance of ethnic Albanian MP thwarts opposition attempt to overthrow North Macedonia’s government

Valentina Dimitrievska in Skopje November 11, 2021

Besa leader called the police after party member Kastriot Rexhepi failed to turn up for crucial vote — but Rexhepi later appeared in a Facebook video claiming to be “fine and in good health”.

North Macedonia’s PM Zaev to postpone resignation ahead of crucial EU summit in December

Valentina Dimitrievska in Skopje November 10, 2021

Influential international leaders including German Chancellor Angela Merkel reportedly contacted Zaev to urge him not to step down before summit.

Romania’s central bank cautiously raises refinancing rate by 25bp

Iulian Ernst in Bucharest November 10, 2021

National Bank of Romania increased the refinancing rate to 1.75%, against consensus expectations for a steeper tightening of the monetary stance.

Unicredit set to complete exit from Turkey's Yapi Kredi Bank with sale of remaining 20% stake

Akin Nazli in Belgrade November 10, 2021

Group will book €1.6bn loss on transaction. Market value of Yapi Kredi has tumbled in recent years amid Turkey’s economic turmoil.

New photos of guns and cash in Bulgarian ex-PM Borissov’s bedroom published days before election

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia November 9, 2021

Anonymous sender slams prosecutors for failing to take action over drawer full of €500 bills and gold bars.

Bosnia's presidency pledges no more wars at meeting with US envoy

Eldar Dizdarevic in Sarajevo November 9, 2021

US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Gabriel Escobar said he agreed with members of Bosnia's tripartite presidency there will be no repeat of ethnic clashes, despite recent hike in tensions.

Bulgaria reveals how millions of euros were siphoned off from Hemus motorway construction

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia November 6, 2021

Caretaker Interior Minister Boyko Rashkov says €30mn paid to construction companies was transferred to shell companies and then exported from the country in sacks.

Heavy rain causes floods and blackouts in Sarajevo

Eldar Dizdarevic in Sarajevo November 5, 2021

Parts of the Bosnian capital closed to traffic and dozens evacuated.

Open Balkan members to speed up free flow of goods and services

Eldar Dizdarevic in Sarajevo November 5, 2021

Albania, North Macedonia and Serbia previously committed to the free movement of goods and services, but officials say this isn't yet happening in practice.

Turkey’s week of social media frenzy sucks in Erdogan, Syrians eating bananas and ‘hacked’ Israeli embassy

bne IntelIiNews November 4, 2021

Thirty accused of tweeting disinformation about president’s health. Syrians face deportation. Israelis deny sharing video mocking Ankara’s lack of combat aircraft.

Bulgaria arrests at least 10 over misuse of funds for Hemus motorway construction

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia November 4, 2021

Construction of the Hemus motorway linking Sofia with the port city of Varna has been marred by controversy and accusations of corruption for years.