Polish media stop reporting to protest new ad tax

bne IntelliNews February 11, 2021

Readers saw black screens and newspaper pages as independent media confront new threat.

Albania and Montenegro impose curfews as coronavirus cases rise sharply

bne IntelliNews February 10, 2021

Recent rise in infections raises fears of a new wave of the virus.

Russia’s Megafon enters Uzbek telecoms market in $100mn joint venture with Ucell

Ben Aris in Berlin February 10, 2021

Leading Russian telecoms company MegaFon has set up a joint venture, Digital Holding, with Uzbekistan’s biggest mobile phone company Ucell and will invest $100mn to enter the country’s telecoms market.

A third of Russians believe that Russia’s Putin has never abused his power, Levada poll shows

bne IntelliNews February 10, 2021

Independent pollster the Levada Center conducted a wide-ranging poll probing Russians’ perceptions of President Vladimir Putin’s probity in the wake of the release of activist Alexey Navalny’s “Putin’s Palace” video.

Leading Hungarian independent radio station silenced

bne IntelliNews February 10, 2021

Budapest court upholds decision by regulators not to renew Klubradio's licence for alleged "repeated offences".

Rising demand from Europe boosts Metalloinvest’s iron production in 2020 to end the year flat

bne IntelliNews February 10, 2021

Rising demand for iron lifted the production at the Metalloinvest group that belongs to Russian metal’s magnate Alisher Usmanov, the company reported at the start of February.

The Kremlin to launch a $6.7bn social spending package to placate protesters

bne IntelliNews February 9, 2021

Faced with a wave of mass protests the Kremlin has announced a social package of spending worth RUB500bn ($6.7bn) to reduce the number of disaffected before the elections.

Romania’s government to slash spending to rein in budget deficit

Iulian Ernst in Bucharest February 9, 2021

Florin Citu's government to defer pension hike and cut expenditures to meet 7%-of-GDP deficit target in 2021 budget.

North Macedonia’s public prosecutors launch investigation into Eurostandard Bank collapse

Valentina Dimitrievska in Skopje February 8, 2021

Eurostandard Bank's owner among four suspected of money laundering and causing the bankruptcy of the bank, whose licence was with drawn in 2020.

Turkey’s banks now offering more seized commercial real estate than homes

Akin Nazli in Belgrade February 7, 2021

Brokers anticipate this year will see banks take possession of great number of tourism industry assets left high and dry by virus-hit 2020.

Montenegro’s Appeal Court overturns verdicts in coup plot case

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia February 7, 2021

13 Montenegrins, Russians and Serbs were found guilty of plotting a coup to coincide with the October 2016 general election.

The EU’s foreign policy chief Josep Borrell slated by critics for not holding Russia to account over Navalny's jailing

bne IntelliNews February 5, 2021

The EU’s foreign policy chief Josep Borrell was slated by critics for failing to hold Russia to account over the jailing of anti-corruption activist and opposition politician Alexei Navalny and handing the Kremlin PR gifts during his visit.

RBI net income falls by 35% to €804mn in 2020

bne IntelliNews February 5, 2021

COVID-19 lockdowns hit income as Raiffeisen raises provisioning ahead of pandemic's after effects.

Pro-Russian Ukrainian party leader Medvedchuk tries to impeach Zelenskiy

bne IntelliNews February 5, 2021

Ukraine’s pro-Russian parties launched an impeachment process against Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy on February 3, the day after the president closed down TV stations associated with the party.

Russian government launches a National Projects 2.0 revamp

Ben Aris in Berlin February 5, 2021

Getting the 12 national projects to work has become an existential problem for the Kremlin, and they are not working. So the government has launched a revamp that it hopes will re-energise the programme.

Montenegro's new government takes on the old guard

Denitsa Koseva in Sofia February 4, 2021

Ousting of Democratic Party of Socialists after 30 years in power followed by replacement of police management, arrests of former ministers and plans to remove chief special prosecutor.

Buyout bid for KAZ Minerals raised after undervaluation claims

Kanat Shaku in Almaty February 4, 2021

Latest offer also does not represent good value for shareholders says investor. If copper price rises further, viability of deal may be harmed.

Moldova’s largest bank MAIB appoints new CEO as it mulls international listing

Clare Nuttall in Glasgow February 4, 2021

Moldova Agroindbank picks Giorgi Shagidze, CFO at Georgian TBC Bank at the time of its 2014 LSE listing.

Naftogaz initiates split of Ukrnafta amid risk of multi-billion claims from minorities

bne IntelliNews February 4, 2021

The CEO of Ukraine’s national gas company Naftogaz, Andriy Kobolev, has started the process of separating the gas company from Ukraine’s leading oil company Ukrnafta as the battle between the state and the oligarchs heats up.

Russia's Rosneft oil major joins BP in going green

bne IntelliNews February 4, 2021

Russia's largest crude oil producer, state-controlled Rosneft, signed a collaboration agreement with British Petroleum on supporting carbon management and sustainability activities of both companies.