Features

SAUDI OIL ATTACKS: US reaches the Iran Rubicon

Will Conroy in Prague September 17, 2019

There’s some tough talk about as White House works out how to respond to weekend’s strikes, but hesitancy shown by key officials in both Riyadh and Washington shows the Iranians may have their foes firmly on the back foot.

LONG READ: Shopping for Russian stocks with ETFs

Ben Aris in Berlin September 17, 2019

Russia’s stock market has returned about 30% this year making it one of the best performing in the world, but as a retail investor how do you go about buying some Russian shares? bne IntelliNews reviews the dozen exchange-traded funds.

NEWSBASE: Market reels as Aramco facilities come under fire

Newsbase MEOG September 17, 2019

A major attack on Saudi oil facilities has cut production by 5.7mn bpd, but the full effect will not be felt until existing reserves dry up.

CHALLENGING ERDOGAN: Another former ally walks out on Turkey’s strongman

bne IntelliNews September 13, 2019

Ex-PM Ahmet Davutoglu has followed former economic czar Ali Babacan in quitting the ruling AKP. Once known as the president’s right-hand man, he declared: “It has become a historic responsibility for us to build a new political movement.”

TURKEY INSIGHT: Rate-setters go for another dizzying descent

Akin Nazli in Belgrade September 12, 2019

Cut of 325 bp taken as tolerable by the markets with pace of easing seen as likely to slow. Rallying lira confounds analysts. If a wheel is set to come off ‘Erdoganomics’, the signs have not been detected yet.

When Chinese deals turn sour

Clare Nuttall in Glasgow September 12, 2019

Tighter regulation and growing geopolitical tensions have caused a downturn in global Chinese outward FDI in the past two years. The Central and Eastern Europe region is no exception.

Russia's net public debt falls to zero

Ben Aris in Berlin September 10, 2019

Russian President Vladimir Putin has a bee in his bonnet about debt. He paid off Russia's debts early and encouraged the government to build up its reserves. Now the state can cover all of its debts with cash.

Uzbekistan resurrects its heroes in a search for its identity

Ben Aris in Tashkent September 8, 2019

Academics say nation's young post-Soviet generations need to discover the past to find out who they really are as they build a modern country. Memories of figures such as Tamerlane and the Uzbek who gave the world the zero are being revived.

Turkmenistan is suffering an economic crisis of its own making

Sam Bhutia for Eurasianet September 8, 2019

Turkmenistan is tremendously rich in natural resources, with around 10% of the world’s total gas reserves. Yet thanks to the bizarre behaviour of President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov the economy is on the verge of a crisis

Where is Russia’s stock market headed this year?

Ben Aris in Berlin September 8, 2019

Russia’s stock market rallied in the second quarter of this year, up some 30% since January, and broke through the 1,400 level briefly in June for the first time since the annexation of the Crimea in 2014. What happens next?

Ozon battling it out for e-commerce supremacy

Ben Aris in Moscow September 6, 2019

Russia’s old economy is stagnating, but the new one of e-commerce is growing in double digits and is still accelerating. All the conditions for e-commerce to take off are now in place, CEO of Ozon Alexander Shulgin tells bne IntelliNews.

Uzbekistan banking on international investors

Ben Aris in Tashkent September 4, 2019

As country opens up, tastiest of the low-hanging fruit is seen in the banking sector.

Ukraine’s new parliament sets itself a hectic legislative agenda

Ben Aris in Berlin September 3, 2019

The new Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy is in a hurry and he has set the new parliament a hectic and hugely ambitious legislative agenda for its first year in office.

KAZAKHSTAN, POST-NAZARBAYEV: Avalanche of news as Tokayev gives first state-of-the-nation address

bne IntelliNews September 3, 2019

New president pledges to support multi-party system and allow peaceful protests. Anti-China demo in oil mining town. Tenge set to weaken further. Political pressure on central bank for affordable credit. Nazarbayeva re-nominated as Senate speaker.

TURKEY INSIGHT: It’s the Turkey we’ve come to love: Official growth beats expectations!

Akin Nazli in Belgrade September 2, 2019

GDP shrinks by better-than-expected (or “expected unexpected”, take your pick) 1.5% in Q2. Worryheads note Erdogan's latest credit splurge offset by private bank deleveraging, and ponder formidable size of commercial zombie on Treasury lab table.

Back to school for Ukraine's new government

Zenon Zawada of Concorde Capital in Kyiv September 2, 2019

Ukraine’s newly elected parliament convened on August 29 and immediately approved a bill amending the Constitution to remove political immunity from members of parliament, writes Zenon Zawada of Concorde Capital in a note on the new government.

Opening up of Uzbekistan: Tourism reaches Alexandria on the Oxus

Ben Aris in Termez September 2, 2019

Uzbekistan, a young, hospitable country with a very ancient history, is the second most freely accessible nation in the world, Deputy PM Aziz Abdukhakimov told bne IntelliNews in an exclusive interview in front of ruins opened to tourists.

Central Asian currencies track ruble in hitting slippery slope

bne IntelliNews August 28, 2019

Kazakh, Uzbek and Tajik currencies slide to new lows. Pressures include over-dependence on Russian economy and US-China trade war impacts. Oil price weakness hurts Kazakhstan.

TURKEY INSIGHT: Turkish assets sliding as Erdogan regime’s grip on events weakens

Akin Nazli in Belgrade August 27, 2019

Market observers ask why hot money did not rush into Turkey to benefit from guaranteed arbitrage against the new rate-cutting horizon.

Russia’s slow embrace of recycled plastics

Ben Aris in Berlin August 21, 2019

Russian companies have embraced the environmental, social and governance (ESG) metrics because their investors are demanding it. That’s because the public are demanding it. The state and the leading petrochemical companies are looking for solutions.

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