CENTRAL ASIA BLOG: Why Tajikistan and Turkmenistan said no to a Central Asian ‘Visegrad Group’

Nizom Khodjayev in Nur-Sultan July 25, 2022

Some analysts contend Moscow was not in favour of Kazakhstan’s proposal, but the opposite might actually have been the case.

Ukraine has received $12.7bn from international partners since war with Russia started five months ago

bne IntelliNews July 25, 2022

Ukraine has received $12.7bn from international partners since the start of the war with Russia in late February, according to the National Bank of Ukraine.

Transnistria restates its commitment to independence, merger with Russia

Iulian Ernst in Bucharest July 25, 2022

Comments from Moldovan separatist republic's foreign minister seen as preparing the ground for potential recognition by Russia as war rages in neighbouring Ukraine.

DON: Why is Russia’s progress in the Ukraine campaign so slow?

Gav Don in Edinburgh July 24, 2022

Ukrainian resistance in the Severodonetsk and Lysychansk salient finally collapsed, but it took Russia more than 60 days to capture the towns, despite seriously outgunning its opponents. Russian forces are advancing at a snail's pace.

Ukraine and Russia sign agreement freeing up Ukrainian grain exports, but Kyiv warns Moscow of "military response" if provoked in Black Sea

Dominic Culverwell in Berlin July 24, 2022

Kyiv and Moscow signed an agreement in Istanbul on July 22 ensuring the safety of Ukrainian grain exports, despite apprehensions that the lengthy talks between Russia, Ukraine, Turkey and the UN would fall apart.

bneGREEN: Green output rises faster than power demand in 2022

Richard Lockhart in Edinburgh July 22, 2022

Renewable power generation has grown faster than sluggish demand so far in 2022, driven by strong capacity additions, IEA data showed, dragging down global power sector CO2 emissions slightly despite rising coal use in Europe.

CBR cuts rates again to 8%, below pre-war levels

bne IntelliNews July 22, 2022

The Central Bank of Russia continued its aggressive rate cutting cycle on July 22, slashing rates by another 150bp to 8%, well below pre-war levels.

Ukraine and Russia to sign breakthrough grain export deal

Theo Normanton July 22, 2022

Ukraine and Russia are set to sign their first deal since the outbreak of war. The agreement will allow around 22 million tonnes of agricultural produce to be safely exported from Black Sea ports, easing fears of a global food crisis.

Central Asia leaders' meeting fizzles as Tajiks, Turkmens refuse to sign treaty

Eurasianet July 22, 2022

The gathering had been intended to create regional solidarity in the face of overbearing pressure from China, Russia.

Hungarian foreign minister in Moscow to secure additional gas deliveries

bne IntelliNews July 22, 2022

Peter Szijjarto visited Moscow with a government mandate to buy an additional 700mcm of gas from Russia in addition to the 4.5bcm under a long-term agreement with Gazprom.

COMMENT: Are the foreign fighters in Ukraine propaganda tools or effective combatants?

Naman Karl-Thomas Habtom in Cambridge July 22, 2022

A few days after Russian forces entered Ukraine, President Zelenskiy announced the formation of an International Legion and waived visa requirements for volunteers that were prepared to take up arms. Within a week 20,000 foreigners had signed up.

Pentagon issues rare warning to Iran on sending drones to Russia but experts question battlefield value of systems at hand

Will Conroy in Prague July 21, 2022

Britain’s spy chief, meanwhile, assessing the likely fate of the JCPOA nuclear pact, says “I don't think the Supreme Leader of Iran wants to cut a deal”.

Gold embargo, Sber ban on EU seventh sanction package

bne IntelliNews July 21, 2022

The 27 EU ambassadors have approved the seventh package of sanctions for Russia’s military invasion of Ukraine, including boycotting Russian largest lender Sber (Sberbank), a gold embargo and sanctions against another 50 individuals and entities.

Nord Stream back up and running, but flow remains low

bne IntelliNews July 21, 2022

Russia’s Nord Stream 1 pipeline has finished its annual maintenance period on time and is now back in operation, triggering a modest drop in gas prices. But like before the downtime, the pipeline is running at well under its full capacity.

bneGREEN: Emissions surge to outstrip pre-pandemic levels

Richard Lockhart in Edinburgh July 21, 2022

Global emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases rose 6.4% to 51bn tonnes in 2021, eclipsing the pre-pandemic peak of 50.3bn tonnes in 2019 as global economic activity resumed, International Monetary Fund data showed.

MOSCOW BLOG: West blowing holes in its own sanctions regime

Ben Aris in Berlin July 20, 2022

The EU “agreed” on a seventh package of sanctions yesterday, except they were gutted by Hungary that said it would veto any package that included sanctions on energy.

Kremlin reminds Nur-Sultan who’s boss over Kazakh oil exports

Fuad Shahbazov July 20, 2022

And there’s not much the Kazakhs can do about it.

EU draws up gas reduction plans on fears of a Russian gas embargo

bne IntelliNews July 20, 2022

The European Commission has drawn up a plan detailing a rationing mechanism and rules to pass price increases on to consumers that can be imposed should Russia cut Europe off from gas deliveries.

Russian gas cut-off could see some European countries' growth fall by 6%, says IMF

Ben Aris in Berlin July 20, 2022

If Russia cuts off its gas deliveries to Europe then the most exposed countries could see their economies contract by up to 6%, the International Monetary Fund said in its blog on July 19.

Putin finds a sympathetic ear in Tehran

bne IntelIiNews July 19, 2022

Russian leader meets with Iranian and Turkish presidents during rare trip abroad. Analysts watching for any outcomes that could boost Kremlin amid its war in Ukraine.