Matthias's Feed
Oct 23, 2015

As prospect of IMF deal fades, Romania risks backsliding on deficit, reforms

BUCHAREST, Oct 23 (Reuters) – The prospects of Romania
lining up a new aid deal led by the International Monetary Fund
are dimming, and the country risks backsliding on commitments to
run tight budget deficits and implement structural reforms.

Under fire for corruption and facing an election in 2016,
Prime Minister Victor Ponta’s Social Democrats may lack the
stomach to rein in spending or implement measures such as
overhauling loss-making state industries as part of a new deal.

Oct 2, 2015

Romanian prices could fall much more than expected: central bank

BUCHAREST, Oct 2 (Reuters) – Romanian prices could fall
twice as sharply as previously estimated this year, due to a
bigger-than-expected impact from a value added tax cut on food,
central bank Deputy Governor Bogdan Olteanu said on Friday.

Olteanu said inflation at the end of 2015 could
be as low as -0.6 percent year-on-year compared to August’s
projection of -0.3 percent. An updated forecast will be released
in November, and Olteanu said his latest figures were “very

Sep 24, 2015

More consolidation seen among Bulgarian banks: central bank

SOFIA (Reuters) – Bulgaria’s banks are likely to see further consolidation, and those with a market share of five percent or above may be especially attractive to buyers, Deputy Central Bank Governor Kalin Hristov said on Thursday.

Greek banks hold just under a fifth of Bulgaria’s banking assets, some of which they may be forced to shed in exchange for state aid they received to weather their country’s debt crisis.

Sep 24, 2015

Bulgaria’s Postbank sees more consolidation, risks from migrant crisis

SOFIA (Reuters) – Bulgaria’s Postbank, a unit of Greece’s Eurobank (EURBr.AT: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), expects to see further consolidation in the Bulgarian banking sector and warned that Europe’s migrant crisis could hamper growth in the economy.

    Chief Executive Petia Dimitrova, in an interview for the Reuters Eastern Europe Investment Summit on Thursday, also played down the impact of the Greek crisis on Greek-owned lenders in Bulgaria and said Eurobank had no plans to sell its Bulgarian operations.

Sep 23, 2015

Bulgaria says waiting for Greece to sign gas link deal

SOFIA (Reuters) – Bulgaria is ready to finalise a deal to build a gas link to neighbouring Greece but is waiting for the new government in Athens to move ahead with the project, Bulgaria’s Deputy Energy Minister Nikolay Nikolov said on Wednesday.

Bulgaria wants to build the link as part of its efforts to wean it off near total dependence on Russian gas and turn itself into a regional energy hub.

Sep 2, 2015

Syriza falls behind conservatives ahead of Greek election: poll

ATHENS (Reuters) – Greek leftist Syriza party on Wednesday fell behind its main conservative rivals for the first time since former premier Alexis Tsipras resigned, offering further evidence that his decision to call a snap election could backfire.

Syriza is on course to win 25 percent of votes at the Sept. 20 election while the conservative New Democracy party will win 25.3 percent, a poll by GPO showed. Nearly 13 percent of respondents were still undecided.

Aug 12, 2015

Goats and herbs: Germans get back to basics in deserted Bulgarian village

ODRINTSI, Bulgaria, Aug 12 (Reuters) – A self-described
shaman who discovered the healing powers of herbs while seeing
visions on his sickbed; a former consultant for IBM who ditched
PowerPoint presentations to drive across Africa and an artist
from Luxembourg who is a qualified plumber.

They are among a group of 22 people newly settled in the
crumbling village of Odrintsi in southeastern Bulgaria where
they live without electricity, but with 230 goats.

Jul 13, 2015

Tsipras tackles backlash after clinching Greek deal

ATHENS, July 13 (Reuters) – Greek Prime Minister Alexis
Tsipras flew back to Athens on Monday to try to ram a
controversial bailout deal he secured from creditors through
parliament, as anger mounted at more painful austerity measures
that could fracture his government.

A sleep-deprived Tsipras has until Wednesday night to quell
dissent within his own ranks — probably by sacking hardliners
— and get unpopular measures passed that include higher value
added tax and pension reforms.

Jul 13, 2015

Relief — and much anger — in Greece as Tsipras clinches deal

ATHENS, July 13 (Reuters) – Greeks greeted news of a deal
with creditors on Monday with a measure of relief mixed with
much anger, particularly at Germany, after it became clear
Greece will have to swallow more austerity that could fracture
the government and spark a backlash.

A sleep-deprived Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras will fly back
to Athens to sell an agreement that ended up being tougher than
proposals Greeks overwhelmingly rejected in a referendum on July
5. He has days to quell dissent within his own ranks — probably
by sacking hardliners — and ram reform laws through parliament.

Jul 12, 2015

Angry at demands, Greeks rail at German “humiliation”

ATHENS, July 12 (Reuters) – Greeks accused Germany of trying
to humiliate them by making tougher demands for a new bailout
deal, as the country’s fate in the euro zone hung in the balance
ahead of a meeting of European ministers in Brussels on Sunday.

Elected on a promise to rid Greece of austerity, Prime
Minister Alexis Tsipras was forced this week to make last minute
concessions to the international creditors for painful
austerity measures in the hopes of securing a cash-for-reforms