Following war with Armenia, Azerbaijan gains control of lucrative gold mines

Ani Mejlumyan and Ulkar Natiqqizi for Eurasianet January 28, 2021

The losses to tax revenues will hit the de facto Nagorno-Karabakh government even harder than Yerevan.

North Macedonia’s state-owned loss-makers await new owners

Valentina Dimitrievska in Skopje January 27, 2021

Post and rail transport operators top the list of companies the government is determined to sell or find a private partner for after years of losses.

Tajikistan: Writing for the president is on the wall (and then scrubbed off)

Eurasianet January 27, 2021

Predictions of an imminent revolt may be wishful thinking.

Bulgaria’s latest nuclear u-turn

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia January 26, 2021

PM Boyko Borissov indicated plans for the new Belene nuclear power plant will be dropped and the equipment purchased used to expand the existing Kozloduy NPP.

OUTLOOK 2021 Azerbaijan

bne IntelIiNews January 25, 2021

The country won the Nagorno-Karabakh war, but can it win the peace? Crisis-hit 2020 looks to have taken 5% off Azerbaijani GDP. For now the path is clear to growth this year of around 2%.

INTERVIEW: “The weekend’s protests were the Russian people's, not the opposition’s” – Maxim Reznik

Linas Jegelevicius in Vilnius January 25, 2021

Russians took to the streets this weekend in over 100 cities in support of jailed opposition leader Alexei Navalny and to protest against Putin’s two-decade-long rule.

OUTLOOK 2021 Mongolia

Anand Tumurtogoo in Ulaanbaatar January 25, 2021

A tumultuous start to the year brought the resignation of the cabinet amid a coronavirus scandal, but the economy should show good growth this year.

OUTLOOK 2021 Slovenia

bne IntelliNews January 20, 2021

Investment and exports will be the main engines of growth as Slovenia emerges from the coronacrisis.

OUTLOOK 2021 Poland

Wojciech Kosc in Warsaw January 20, 2021

2021 could be another year of tension and unrest, especially if the economic recovery is sluggish, but PiS maintains the advantage of a poll lead over weak and divided opposition.

TEHRAN BLOG: Will Biden bet on a quick return to the Iran nuclear deal?

bne IntelIiNews January 19, 2021

Saudis and Israelis on edge as incoming US president looks set to restore Barack Obama’s signature foreign policy achievement. The Iranians are playing it cool. But they dearly desire an end to those crushing sanctions.

OUTLOOK 2021 Moldova

bne IntelliNews January 19, 2021

After two years of increased political and economic instability, Moldova has the chance to return to the reform path.

OUTLOOK 2021 Romania

bne IntelliNews January 18, 2021

Romania needs credible, farsighted and agile governance to address urgent vulnerabilities and capture the opportunities created by the European Union’s reconstruction plans.

LONG READ: The oligarch problem

Ben Aris in Berlin January 17, 2021

Andrew Meier had a good joke about the problems post-Soviet countries face with their oligarchs: "What is to be done with those who are to blame."

OUTLOOK 2021 Armenia

bne IntelIiNews January 16, 2021

Small nation enters new year battered and bruised by the pandemic and defeat in the autumn war with Azerbaijan. A modest economic rebound is within reach should the peace hold.

One of Russia’s biggest wood product companies, Segezha could be Sistema’s next IPO

Ben Aris in Berlin January 15, 2021

Segezha is Russia's biggest pulp and paper company. Owned by multi-industry conglomerate Sistema, the company could be the next up in the groups string of IPOs

COVID-19 and Trump’s indifference helped human rights abusers in 2020

bne IntelliNews January 15, 2021

2020 was a bad year for human rights around the world, but the US’ upcoming Biden presidency is an opportunity for change, says Human Rights Watch.

Central Asia vaccination plans underwhelm, but governments look unruffled

Eurasianet January 15, 2021

Uzbekistan, Tajikistan are taking triumphalist stances on coronavirus.

OUTLOOK 2021 Lithuania

bne IntelliNews January 14, 2021

Lithuania's economic contraction in 2020 was among the smallest in Europe, but its recovery will be slower than in the other Baltic states in 2021.

OUTLOOK 2021 Serbia

bne IntelliNews January 14, 2021

Serbia weathered the coronacrisis better than the rest of the Southeast Europe region, and no major political surprises are expected in the inter-election year of 2021.

OUTLOOK 2021 Georgia

Iulian Ernst in Bucharest January 13, 2021

Ivanishvili says he’s quit politics, Saakashvili has suffered a failed comeback, might new faces prove dominant on a political scene riven by the opposition’s boycott of parliament? The tourism-hooked economy remains destabilised by the pandemic.