Europe/Middle East

  • The Great Pipeline Race: Are Europe’s South Stream Fears Rational?

    The Great Pipeline Race: Are Europe’s South Stream Fears Rational?

    Despite possessing better financing and greater energy benefits compared to its competitors (namely the Nabucco pipeline), the proposed South Stream pipeline has faced considerable opposition in Europe – by countries who wish to reduce the region’s reliance on Russian gas. Europe must ask itself: is politics really worth losing out on South Stream’s economic benefits?

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  • Why The World Must Learn From Turkey’s Economic Miracle: Jeffrey Sachs

    Why The World Must Learn From Turkey’s Economic Miracle: Jeffrey Sachs

    After a sharp downturn in 1999-2001, Turkey’s economy managed to grow by 5 percent per year on average from 2002 to 2012 – despite global and regional crises. There is however nothing flashy about the country's rise; its success was simply based on getting the fundamentals right, like rebuilding the banking sector, getting the budget under control, and investing heavily where it counts: infrastructure, education, health, and technology.

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  • Curing Egypt’s Post-Revolution Blues: Mohamed El-Erian

    Curing Egypt’s Post-Revolution Blues: Mohamed El-Erian

    The worsening economic situation in Egypt over the last few months have led many to blame the 2011 revolution for derailing a seemingly stable economy. Given the right reforms however, Egypt can still restore economic and financial stability; and fulfil the promises set out earlier by the revolution.

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  • Russia’s Privatisation Drive: Roadblocks In The Way?

    Russia’s Privatisation Drive: Roadblocks Ahead?

    On paper, Russian President Vladimir Putin is fully committed to the privatisation of state assets. In May last year, he signed a decree calling for the sale of all state holdings in firms – outside of the defence and energy industries – by 2016. But since then, the pace of Russian privatisation has been languid at best. Part of the problem has been opposition from avowed statists, who count a close ally and adviser to Putin among their ranks.

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  • Spain Still In Pain: No Clear Sign Of Recovery?

    Spain Still In Pain: No Clear Sign Of Recovery?

    Last week, three new pieces of economic data for Spain revealed the extent of the nation’s fiscal and economic crisis. With record high unemployment, underperforming banks and uncertain economic policies, will Spain ever recover?

    There have been three recent developments in Spain: the new record high unemployment, the earnings reports of several large banks, and the government's new fiscal forecasts and strategy.

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  • Margaret Thatcher’s Economic Legacy: A Divided Nation

    Margaret Thatcher’s Economic Legacy: A Nation Divided

    The funeral of former British PM Margaret Thatcher saw a nation divided in hatred and love for one of the most iconic world leaders of modern times. While, Inner London today is one of the richest parts of the entire European Union, in the North of England there are towns still with persistently high levels of unemployment due to Thatcher’s past policies.

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  • Tunisia: Africa’s New Energy Hotspot?

    Tunisia: Africa’s New Energy Hotspot?

    Until recently, Tunisia was considered to be a minor league and relatively underexplored venue in Africa's rapidly expanding oil & gas scene. This situation has quickly changed with new bid rounds and forced relinquishments creating an opportunity for new companies to come in.

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  • Central Banks Cannot Fix Europe’s Solvency Crisis: Michael Pettis

    Central Banks Cannot Fix Europe’s Solvency Crisis: Michael Pettis

    Except for lower debt refinancing costs, the fundamentals of peripheral eurozone economies have not improved in the last six months. At best they are unchanged, but they are probably worse. The region’s crisis continues to be just a liquidity crisis as far as policymakers are concerned – and not caused by problems in the “real” economy. But is peripheral Europe really suffering primarily from a liquidity crisis? When do we call it a solvency crisis?

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  • Israel’s Natural Gas Future: A Promising Land?

    Israel’s Natural Gas Future: A Promising Land?

    The first gas has started flowing from Israel's supergiant Tamar gasfield in the Levant Basin. Where it will go will redraw the Mediterranean energy map and the geopolitics that goes along with it.

    The Tamar field stakeholders announced on 30 March that the gas had started flowing, raising the value of Texas-based Noble Energy Inc. (NYSE: NBL), which holds a 36 percent stake, and Israel's two Delek Group subsidiaries, which each hold a 15.6 percent stake.

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  • Germany’s Dangerous Gamble On The Cyprus Bailout: George Friedman

    Germany’s Dangerous Gamble On The Cyprus Bailout: George Friedman

    Since announcing the Cyprus bailout on March 25, the European Union, and by de facto Germany, have been keen to emphasise the uniqueness of Nicosia’s situation – downplaying a repeat for any other eurozone nation. The question, of course, is whether foreign depositors in European banks will accept that Cyprus was one of a kind. Indeed, we must ask ourselves why the Germans would have created this risk in the first place.

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