Ukraine’s GDP warrants hit par as the country’s economic future brightens

bne IntelliNews January 14, 2020

The GDP warrants that Ukraine gave its sovereign bond holders as compensation for a 20% haircut have appreciated in price and hit par on January 14.

China's Zijin reportedly to invest $800mn in production capacity expansion in Serbia in 2020

bne IntelliNews January 14, 2020

Zijin is building up its presence in Serbia. It holds 63% stake in copper giant RTB Bor, where it has pledged to invest $1.26bn, and last year agreed to buy Freeport McMoran's copper and gold assets in Serbia for up to $390mn.

Turkey’s top listed automaker Ford Otosan outperforms peer Tofas in 2019 exports

Akin Nazli in Belgrade January 14, 2020

Year saw Turkish vehicle makers export 86% of production. Exports were down 5% and output was reduced by 6%.

A maximum of RUB2-3bn are stolen from the Russian federal budget every year, says Kudrin

bne IntelliNews January 14, 2020

Audit Chamber Director Alexei Kudrin says a maximum of RUB2-3bn ($32.6-48bn) are stolen from the Russian federal budget annually, Vestnik reported on January 14.

A maximum of RUB2bn-3bn stolen from the Russian federal budget every year says Kudrin

bne IntelliNews January 14, 2020

The value of the Russian economy was $1.657 trillion in 2019, making the stealing equivalent to 1.9%-2.9% of GDP.

Hungarian central bank governor blasts flawed housing policy

Tamas Szilagyi in Budapest January 14, 2020

MNB governor Gyorgy Matolcsy blamed the government for a lack of strategy that has contributed to spiralling prices.

Moscow sees record housing built in 2019

bne IntelliNews January 13, 2020

Moscow saw a record of 4.96mn sqm of housing space completed in 2019, up by 40% year-on-year, and highest level of residential construction since the 1965 mass housing blitz carried out by Nikita Khrushchev.

Romanian PM backs president’s plans for early elections

bne IntelliNews January 13, 2020

Installed by a heterogenous group of parties and MPs, and with term elections looming towards the end of this year, the scope of Ludovic Orban’s government to take action on issues such as tackling Romania’s budget deficit is very limited.

Economic crash means three-quarters of Turks now ‘prefer supermarket private labels’

bne IntelliNews January 13, 2020

Survey also shows 87% of consumers make point of comparing prices at supermarkets before heading to shops. Figure is up from 72% a year ago.

EU must deliver on enlargement promises says European Commission president

bne IntelliNews January 12, 2020

EU officials to start working on changes to the enlargement methodology soon in attempt to persuade French President Emmanuel Macron to approve start of negotiations with Albania and North Macedonia.

Iran’s admission it shot down airliner with missile sparks anti-regime street unrest

bne IntelliNews January 12, 2020

Pro-regime protesters, meanwhile, set alight union jack after UK ambassador detained after leaving vigil for victims at which chanting started.

Russia real estate legends to raise €140mn for fund with focus on last mile warehouses for the e-commerce sector

Ben Aris in Berlin January 11, 2020

Three of Russia’s best known veteran real estate businessmen have come together to form L.O.P. to develop urban warehousing that targets Russia’s booming last mile e-commerce sector.

Sanctions-hammered Iran saw GDP shrink 8.7% in 2019 and can’t expect growth in 2020 says World Bank

bne IntelliNews January 10, 2020

Just six months ago forecast was for contraction of only 4.5% in face of US “economic war”.

Turkey ‘to sign $2.7bn compensation deal for pre-war work carried out in Libya’

bne IntelliNews January 10, 2020

Backlog of Turkish contract work in conflict-torn country amounts to $16bn says business council representative. Ankara militarily backing Tripoli government in bid to ensure its survival.

House arrest for Baring Vostok Calvey and partners prolonged

bne IntelliNews January 10, 2020

Moscow’s Basmanny Court on January 9 prolonged the house arrest of Michael Calvey, US citizen and founder of leading Russian fund Baring Vostok private equity firm, until February 13.

Sales of hybrid cars in the Czech Republic up by 73% y/y in 2019

Nelly Tomcikova in Prague January 10, 2020

Sales of hybrid cars, combining an internal combustion engine and an electric motor, in the Czech Republic increased by 73% year-on-year to 8,346 cars in 2019, while the domestic automotive industry market declined

Lukashenko slams Russia for "making three times more money" from gas sales to Belarus than from Germany

bne IntelliNews January 10, 2020

Belarusian President says Russian natural gas monopoly Gazprom earns "three times as much in Belarus than in Germany" from gas sales amid the lack of agreement with Moscow on new oil and gas subsidies for Minsk.

Iran’s started “big operations” in Middle East says general flaunting ‘Resistance Axis’ flags

bne IntelliNews January 9, 2020

Adds that Iranians were prepared to fire even thousands of missiles if US had militarily responded to Iraq airbase strikes. Up to 500 Americans could have died in ‘first phase’ he claims.

US, Canada ‘confident Iran downed Ukraine flight PS752 with missile’

bne IntelliNews January 9, 2020

Iranian civil aviation chief insists: “Scientifically, it is impossible that a missile hit the Ukrainian plane, and such rumours are illogical.”

Bulgarian environment minister arrested over water crisis

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia January 9, 2020

Neno Dimov was detained over illegal siphoning from a reservoir that deprived a major industrial town of water supplies. He is the first serving minister ever to be arrested in Bulgaria.