The Withdrawal Agreement is leaving Britons abroad behind

By Jayne Adye Chief Brexit Negotiator for the European Union, Michel Barnier, constantly talks about the Withdrawal Agreement’s obligations not being fulfilled by the United Kingdom, as well as implications the UK is not taking the Brexit negotiations seriously enough to secure a Deal. One of the main themes of Barnier’s argument is the matter of ‘EU…

Commission Approves €500m MFA Loan to Ukraine

The European Commission, on behalf of the EU, has approved the disbursement of a €500 million loan to Ukraine as part of its fourth macro-financial assistance (MFA) programme.  With this disbursement, the EU has now provided Ukraine with €3.8 billion in MFA loans since 2014. This is the largest amount of MFA the EU has…

Serbs’ Continued Fight for Property Rights in Croatia

By Willy Fautré Twenty-five years after the end of Croatia’s war for independence from Serbia, thousands of Serbs are still fighting for their property rights in that Western Balkan country which became a member state of the European Union (EU) in 2013 and is now chairing the EU.  Dalibor Močević, a Croatian citizen of Serbian…

What is Happening in the Ukrainian Energy Market?

Ukraine, like other European countries, is experiencing a crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic. In the energy sector, this is reflected by a significant decline in electricity consumption. However, the situation is further compounded by an ongoing systemic crisis in the sector.  Even before the Coronavirus outbreak Ukraine’s energy sector was facing enormous challenges, with…

€3 Billion to Fight COVID-19 in EU Neighbourhood

The European Parliament has approved €3 billion in loans to help EU neighbours and partner countries deal with the fallout of COVID-19. The loans, which will be given on highly favourable terms and disbursed over a year, will help the following ten countries whose economies have been pushed into recession by the pandemic. The are:…

Healthcare Charities Need Time to Recover from the Current Crisis

Three independent British health and care charities have warned that it will take many more months before NHS and social care organisations are able to fully restart services following the Covid-19 outbreak.  At a UK Parliament Health and Social Care Select Committee evidence session yesterday (14 May), the Health Foundation, The King’s Fund and Nuffield Trust…

The Importance of Rule of Law for Investors

I met with Philippe Bresson to explore his experience of investing in Eastern Europe. Philippe manages the BEE Family Office, formerly BRICOSTORE Holding, a 160-year-old family-owned holding company that manages a variety of assets and holdings in various business sectors. It was originally focused on the retail sector in France and internationally.  In the late…

Serbia Prepares for Elections

There has been a week of opposition protests in Belgrade as the political campaigns start to crank up in anticipation of rescheduled elections in Serbia on 21 June. These were due to be held in April, but have been delayed because of the crisis facing the country with the COVID-19 pandemic. Commenting on recent developments Tanja…

Can the IMF accept COVID-19-struck Lebanon’s ‘reform-for-support’ request despite concerns over Hezbollah and Bassil?

By John Grogan Lebanese poet Khahil Gibran wrote in the 1920’s: “My Lebanon is a serene mountain sitting between the sea and the plains, like a poet between one eternity and another.” When I first met the Chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Lebanese Parliament Yassine Jaber on a delegation to the Westminster…

ECB Breaches Competences

In its ruling yesterday, the German Constitutional Court declared the ECB decisions on the bond purchase programme (PSPP) to be in breach of competences. The judges declared the previous positive preliminary decision of the European Court of Justice to be incomprehensible and thus arbitrary, because the Court had excluded the economic effects of the programme…