The North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) now has a new liaison office in Moldova’s capital, Chișinău. It’s seen as an important stage in Moldova’s relations with the organisation without yet affecting the principle of the country’s constitutional neutrality as it is a diplomatic mission which has no military implications
Poland and Ukraine, the two largest countries in Emerging Europe, should jointly promote themselves as an outsourcing destination.
“They should create an outsourcing hub and complement one another in their offer,” Iwona Chojnowska-Haponik, director of the Foreign Investment Department at the Polish Investment and Trade Agency (PAIH), during the second Polish – Ukrainian Outsourcing Forum in Rzeszów, Poland, organised by the Pro Progressio Foundation.
Government reshuffles continue. On the morning of December 7, Polish Prime Minister Beata Szydło, remained in office when she survived an opposition motion of no confidence,Law and Justice (PiS) deputies voting the motion down. Ten hours later however, she resigned. After a meeting of the governing party its spokesperson, Beata Mazurek, confirmed the political committee had decided to appoint Mateusz Morawiecki, erstwhile deputy prime minister and minister of finance and economic development to replace Mrs Szydło.
Land prices in the Czech Republic continue to climb. According to Farmy.cz, at the end of November 2017, the average market price amounted to 23.50 Czech korunas per square metre, about 15 per cent higher than a year earlier.
Slovenia is Emerging Europe’s leader in the number of ‘hidden champions’ — 3.5 per one million inhabitants. As defined by Professor Hermann Simon, a German business leader and author, hidden champions are firms that are market share leaders — amongst the world’s top three or number one in the continent, with turnover below 1 billion euros and yet not generally known to the public. Poland has only 0.7 such businesses per 1 million inhabitants, the Czech Republic and Hungary each 0.4.
Almost 120 kilometres of new express ways are scheduled to be opened in Poland by the end of 2017, says the General Directorate for National Roads and Motorways (GDDKiA).
Faced with heavy criticism from the business community and even the Social Insurance Institution (ZUS; which would have been the main beneficiary), Poland’s government has been forced to backtrack on plans to remove the upper threshold for the payment of social contributions from January 1, 2018. This despite the proposed legislation being at an advanced stage.
The European Commission will not transfer the third and last 600 million euro tranche of the current 1.8 billion euro macro-financial assistance programme to Ukraine, approved in 2015.
It will take as many as six decades for income levels in the Western Balkans to catch up with those of the European Union (EU) if economies in the region continue to grow at the average speed achieved between 1995 and 2015, says the World Bank’s Western Balkans: Revving Up the Engines of Growth and Prosperity report, looking at how Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia can speed up economic growth and achieve faster income convergence with the EU.
Shale gas exploration in Poland has come to an end. San Leon, an Irish firm which in 2014 was the operator of 24 and a shareholder of 11 licences to explore oil and gas reserves — both conventional and unconventional (such as shale gas), has returned the last two shale gas licenses it held to Poland’s Ministry of the Environment. The company, which was the country’s biggest shale gas enthusiast, could have continued exploration until 2020, but has not found any partners interested in doing so.
Poland’s governing party, Law and Justice (PiS) continues to herald its multiple successes two years after the party won a general election. First, the party’s leader Jarosław Kaczyński gave a special interview to state-owned and government-managed TVP, then he and Prime Minister Beata Szydło threw an unexpected press conference, but didn’t take any questions from media representatives. Continue reading Kaczyński Defends PiS Record
The Czech National Bank (CNB) raised its main interest rate by 25 basis points to 0.50 per cent in early November. The bank had also increased the rate in August, in doing so becoming Europe’s first monetary authority to embark on a tightening cycle.