DEATH OF THE SOVIET UNION: Widespread nostalgia but no going back

bne IntelliNews December 10, 2021

Many older citizens across the former Soviet Union look back nostalgically to the ‘golden age’ before the transition but few genuinely want a return to socialism.

Uzbek energy reforms focus on energy saving, high efficiency in the first phase

Ben Aris in Tashkent December 10, 2021

Uzbekistan under its new president, Shavkat Mirziyoyev, is a country gearing up for a bright future – in that the president wants to make sure there is enough power to keep all the lights on as both the economy and the population are growing fast.

DEATH OF THE SOVIET UNION: Mountain-dwelling Old Believer reflects on the USSR that passed her by

Theo Normanton in Moscow December 9, 2021

Living a quiet life of devotion in the mountains, modernity has left Old Believer Agafya Likova largely untroubled, and governments — Soviet and contemporary — have had little imprint on her life, with a few crucial exceptions.

Uzbekistan privatisation: “There is no other way”

Ben Aris in Tashkent December 8, 2021

Uzbekistan's privatisation programme has been in development for several years, and now the first wave of candidate companies have been prepared the number of auctions is snowballing.

DEATH OF THE SOVIET UNION: A green revolution brought the USSR down

Ben Aris in Berlin, Linas Jegelevicius in Vilnius, Clare Nuttall in Glasgow December 8, 2021

The green agenda is dominating the debate today, but the importance of environmental issues is nothing new: 30 years ago it was a green revolution that brought the Soviet Union down.

Uztelecom digitising Uzbekistan

Ben Aris in Tashkent December 7, 2021

Nothing says “transformation” like mobile phone ownership and in five years Uzbekistan has seen an explosion of smartphone sales and telecoms services as the state-owned national champion Uztelecom has invested heavily into its infrastructure.

Uzbekistan’s Mahalla democracy

Ben Aris in Navoi December 7, 2021

Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev was roundly criticised in September after he won re-election with a landslide, standing unopposed. But rather than ignore democratic values, the president has turned to the ancient system of Mahalla instead.

DON: Blunting the Javelin? – The prospects for Nato participation in a Ukraine-Russia war

Gav Don December 3, 2021

What will Nato offer to Ukraine? Probably a Javelin missile resupply

New American company seeks to realise Trans-Caspian pipe dream

David O'Byrne for Eurasianet December 3, 2021

The new proposal’s modest scope, and new diplomatic developments, could finally make the pipeline feasible.

Tajikistan press-gangs an army to defend long Afghan border

Kamila Ibragimova for Eurasianet December 3, 2021

The conscripts, generally Tajikistan’s poorest young men, are brutalised into service. And they are the country’s first line of defence.

World headlines on bewildering collapse of lira overshadow Turkey’s announcement of 7.4% growth in 3Q

bne IntelIiNews November 30, 2021

International press increasingly referring to the “Erdogan currency crisis”. “Our money has no value”, Turks complain to New York Times.

DATACRUNCH: Croatia’s post-crisis rebound goes beyond tourism

Clare Nuttall in Zagreb and Glasgow November 30, 2021

Croatia is rebounding from the deep hit to the economy last year with a broad-based recovery, but reforms are needed for the country to build on this and take advantage of inflows of EU funds.

LONG READ: East Europe fares better than West in gas crisis thanks to pricing terms

bne IntelliNews November 30, 2021

Europe has made a concerted push to end long-term contracts and switch to shorter-term gas hub prices. Countries in northern Europe that made that change have been burnt by the current gas price spike but those in the south that didn't fared better.

Have Georgia’s crypto glory days passed?

Clément Girardot for Eurasianet November 30, 2021

More expensive electricity means global cryptominers are avoiding Georgia.

INTERVIEW: Kazakh gold miner AltynGold on a roll

Theo Normanton in Moscow November 29, 2021

London-listed gold miner AltynGold with assets in Kazakhstan reported strong first-half results, with revenue doubling year on year to $23mn and a net profit of $9.3mn for the period, compared to a loss in the same period a year earlier.

Russian retail investors return to bank deposits as interest rates rise

bne IntelliNews November 29, 2021

Thanks to a series of aggressive rate hikes by the CBR, Russian retail investors have started to put their money back into bank deposits after they invested heavily in the stock market after real interest rates fell to next to nothing.

Ready for war at any time in southern Armenia

Neil Hauer in Sisian November 27, 2021

After last year's war, Armenia’s southernmost province of Syunik is now bordered by Azerbaijan on two sides. Local people fear they are next.

Montenegro’s dysfunctional ruling coalition limps on

Clare Nuttall in Glasgow November 26, 2021

Keeping President Djukanovic’s DPS out of power has proved a strong glue holding the coalition together, but rifts among its members have stalled Montenegro’s progress towards EU accession.

Gazprom says it will use windfall gas crisis cash to up boost capex

Newsbase staff November 26, 2021

Capital spending levels at Russia’s Gazprom are once again creeping upwards, as the company prepares to ramp up gas supplies to China and expand development in the Russian Arctic.

Kazakhstan looks to nuclear amid crypto-driven energy shortage

Almaz Kumenov for Eurasianet November 26, 2021

The country no longer has a choice, the president says.