Is Armenia facing a colour revolution? Popular protests on the rise in Emerging Europe

Ben Aris in Berlin April 22, 2018

Whether or not the detention of opposition leader Nikol Pashinian proves enough to lop the head off the Armenian demonstrations, analysts will note yet another example of how ready people are across Emerging Europe to take to the streets.

Sberbank sets up trade-boosting website

Ben Aris in Moscow April 20, 2018

As Russia tries to increase its non-commodity exports, state owned banking giant Sberbank is sponsoring the development of the new Best of Partners platform designed to bring businesses and service providers together.

COMMENT: QE is dead and that is bad news for EM bonds

head of emerging markets at Cbonds in Moscow April 20, 2018

Last year was one of the most successful for international bond investors in many years, but that that is starting to change as the end of QE is already apparent and political risks are rising for issuers like Russia.

Russian internet disrupted by war with Telegram, Facebook, Amazon and Google warned

bne IntelliNews April 20, 2018

Russian telecom watchdog Roskomnadzor could not effectively enforce country-wide ban on Telegram messenger, disturbing the work of dozens of unrelated services as a result of blanket blocking of eighteen Amazon and Google IP address clusters and clos

Kremlin says nationalising sanctioned aluminium major Rusal on the table

bne IntelliNews April 19, 2018

"Temporary nationalisation" of Russian aluminium major Rusal is one of the possible means of supporting the company badly hurt by the latest round of US sanctions, Kremlin's spokesman Dmitri Peskov told the press on April 19.

Putin and Trump trying to walk back Syria strike and sanctions tensions

bne IntelliNews April 18, 2018

The US administration is split over how to react to Russia’s increasing aggression, both the presidents of both countries have made peace offerings in an attempt to improve relations.

Russia's industrial output disappoints in March, EconMin starts outlook revision

bne IntelliNews April 17, 2018

Russia's industrial output in March expanded by 1% year-on-year, slowing down from 1.5% y/y seen in February and 2.9% y/y in January, according to the report by Rosstat statistics service.

What’s the cost of US sanctions on Russia?

Ben Aris in Berlin April 17, 2018

How much will the new US sanctions imposed on April 6 cost Russia? There is the $16bn that the oligarchs named on the sanctions list have already lost from the fall in share prices in the first week- but there is a lot more than that.

Is the Russian business of German engineering giant Siemens in danger?

Ben Aris in Berlin April 17, 2018

The Kremlin and Siemens' former partner, leading Russian businessman Alexey Mordashov, seem to be getting ready cut into the German firm's near monopoly on heavy engineering in Russia.

Standard & Poor’s upgrades multinational development bank IIB's long-term rating to BBB+ stable

bne IntelliNews April 16, 2018

The upgrade was driven by an improvement in the bank’s financial profile, and the rating agency says another upgrade is on the cards in the next 12-24 months if its business position improves.

US postpones fresh sanctions on Russia, Kremlin retaliation options limited

Ben Aris in Berlin April 16, 2018

The Trump administration postponed imposing yet another round of sanctions on Russia to the “near future” in the wake of this weekend's airstrikes on Syria.

China-Europe container traffic across EEU to almost double by 2020

bne IntelliNews April 16, 2018

Increased transit container traffic through the Eurasian Economic Union will depend on trade between China and the EU, but transit states will need to expand their transport infrastructure and remove a number of barriers, EDB report says.

BRICKS & MORTAR: Russian foreign property investments grow for the first time in four years

George Kachmazov managing partner of Tranio April 16, 2018

Russians spent €1.1bn on international real estate in 2017, up by a quarter y/y, as the middle class hunts for a safe haven for for their life savings.

Russia calls emergency UN session over US, France and UK’s Syria missile strikes

Ben Aris in Berlin April 14, 2018

Response to claimed use of chemical weapons appears to have been carefully calibrated to avoid putting Moscow into a position where it might have to react militarily. Russia has accused the US of international “hooliganism”.

MOSCOW BLOG: Planet Business crashes into Planet Politics

Ben Aris in Berlin April 13, 2018

When Putin took office the Moscow-based press corps spent six months writing the same piece: “Who is Mr Putin?” There are two Putins and two Russias: one is all about business and the other is all about politics. Are the two about to collide?

Russia's dividend season opens

bne IntelliNews April 13, 2018

Russia’s summer dividend season is approaching and for those investors brave enough to remain in Russian stocks, the best paying dividend stocks have also proven the most crisis-resistant in recent years.

Leaked document shows EU’s initially hardline approach to Gazprom

bne IntelliNews April 12, 2018

European Commission had planned to adopt a tough stance on Gazprom's allegedly “abusive practices” in selling gas to CEE, but current approach could let Russian energy major off the hook without serious consequences.

Kremlin working on schemes to protect oligarchs hit by new sanctions list

Ben Aris in Berlin April 12, 2018

"Onshore offshores" could be created in Kaliningrad and Vladivostok as the Kremlin looks at options to create a financial bolthole for sanctions-hit oligarchs.

BRICKS & MORTAR: separating noise from reality in Russia’s real estate sector

Tim Millard in Moscow of JLL April 11, 2018

Russia's stocks, bonds and currency is in meltdown, but for the real estate market the risks are less immediate. The occupational markets are now largely ruble denominated so ruble volatility is less of a problem.

Russia’s coal industry is blooming

bne IntelliNews April 11, 2018

Russian corporations involved in coal mining, and other related sectors, grew by a staggering 68% y/y in 2017