Ivana's Feed
Dec 17, 2014

Balkan railway part of Chinese ‘express lane’ to Europe

BELGRADE, Dec 17 (Reuters) – Serbia said on Wednesday it
expected Chinese construction of a new rail link between
Belgrade and Budapest to begin by mid-2015, part of Beijing’s
strategy to accelerate the flow of goods into Europe through the
Balkans.

China, Serbia and Hungary signed a memorandum of
understanding on the 370-km (230 mile) rail route on the second
day of a summit in Belgrade between China and 16 central and
eastern European states.

Dec 16, 2014

China looks to up investment in central, eastern Europe

BELGRADE, Dec 16 (Reuters) – China said on Tuesday it would
create a new investment fund of $3 billion (2.4 billion euros)
targeting central and eastern Europe, seeking to strengthen its
foothold in the region as a door to the wider European Union.

China sees central and eastern Europe as a potentially
lucrative market and bridgehead to the wider EU, drawn by
relatively low wages, educated workforces and scope for
development on the fringes of the bloc.

Dec 16, 2014

China sees new $3 billion investment fund for central and eastern Europe

BELGRADE (Reuters) – China said on Tuesday it would create a new investment fund of $3 billion (1.91 billion pounds) targeting central and eastern Europe, seeking to strengthen its foothold in the region as a door to the wider European Union.

The pledge comes on top of $10 billion earmarked in 2012 for investment projects in a region comprising some of the EU’s newest members and others in the Western Balkans that are not yet part of the bloc but trying to get there.

Dec 15, 2014

Cash-strapped Balkans seeks Chinese funds for infrastructure projects

BELGRADE (Reuters) – China is preparing a fresh investment push into central and eastern Europe, promising more than $10 billion in loans for energy and infrastructure projects to be discussed in Belgrade this week.

China is seeking a new foothold on the continent, outside the European Union, under a strategy adopted in 2012.

Dec 5, 2014

Serbia invites bids for majority stake in loss-making steel mill

BELGRADE, Dec 5 (Reuters) – Serbia is inviting bids for an
80-percent stake in a loss-making steel mill, aiming to ease
pressure on the country’s finances.

The steel mill in the central Serbian town of Smederevo is
one of the largest beneficiaries of government subsidies,
absorbing as much as $120 million of taxpayers’ money a year.

Nov 20, 2014

Serbia clinches one billion euro loan deal with IMF

BELGRADE (Reuters) – Serbia agreed a three-year precautionary loan deal with the International Monetary Fund on Thursday worth around 1 billion euros (0.79 billion pounds), ending months of uncertainty that had weighed on the dinar currency.

The government hopes the deal will reassure markets concerned over the Balkan country’s budget deficit and public debt, which have spiralled since the onset of the global crisis six years ago.

Nov 15, 2014

Serbian nationalist, released from war crimes court, rallies thousands

BELGRADE (Reuters) – A Serbian nationalist leader rallied thousands of supporters on Saturday in scenes that threaten to embarrass a U.N. war crimes court that released him on grounds of ill-health before reaching a verdict in his trial.

Vojislav Seselj’s barn-storming return to Serbia has angered victims of the hardline nationalism he propagated during Yugoslavia’s bloody breakup in the 1990s.

Nov 12, 2014

Ailing Serb nationalist returns from war crimes court, vows revenge

BELGRADE (Reuters) – An ailing Serbian nationalist, released before a verdict in his lengthy war crimes trial in The Hague, returned home on Wednesday vowing revenge on former friends and “traitors” who seek integration with the West.

Vojislav Seselj, whom doctors say is suffering from cancer of the colon which has spread to his liver, was given a raucous welcome by hundreds of supporters who packed Belgrade airport.

Oct 29, 2014

European Union lifts freeze on Milosevic family assets

BELGRADE (Reuters) – The European Union has lifted a freeze on the assets of late Serbian strongman Slobodan Milosevic and his close family, saying the people targeted no longer posed a threat to democracy.

Ousted from power in 2000, Milosevic died in 2006 while on trial in The Hague for war crimes including genocide during the violent break-up of Yugoslavia in the 1990s. His wife and children fled to Russia.

Oct 23, 2014

Kosovo foreign minister visits Serbia, says ‘I’m symbol of sovereignty’

BELGRADE (Reuters) – Enver Hoxhaj paid the first visit by a foreign minister of independent Kosovo to old master Serbia on Thursday and declared himself a “symbol of Kosovo sovereignty”, showing how relations have evolved from open hostility to tacit co-existence.

The trip, within the framework of an European Union-sponsored gathering of Western Balkans government ministers, followed a decision on Wednesday by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to set Kosovo on the path to membership and a place in the Rio de Janeiro Games in 2016.