Latvia looks for a new Prime Minister

Laimdota Straujuma, former Latvian PM (Maliepa, CC BY-SA)

Bulgaria and Greece will build gas interconnector

Zero tolerance for drinking and driving in Lithuania

Romanian 2016 budget approved by the government and the Czech’s one by the parliament

Latvia

After Monday’s resignation of Prime Minister Lamidota Straujuma Latvians are wondering what will happen next. The president Raimonds Vejonis announced political consultations. But as for now Latvian politicians don’t know who will replace Straujuma and who will create the new government. “Ms. Straujuma will continue in the role until a successor is found, but labyrinthine allegiances in the Saeima, Latvia’s Parliament, will make the task of finding a credible successor difficult”, New York Times reports. “Everything is open right now. Nothing is clear”, NYT cites Veiko Spolitis, a member of Parliament in Ms. Straujuma’s party Unity.

The government of Ms. Straujuma was formed by the Unity Party, the Union of Greens and Farmers and the National Alliance. She took office in January 2014. She resigned a few days ago because of the tensions within the coalition and within her own party showing disappointment with her leadership. The greatest problems of Ms. Straujuma’s government were 2016 budget that envisioned raising taxes, refugee crisis, teacher’s protests and the bankruptcy of airBaltic. When stepping down she reminded that her “government has adopted two [annual national] budgets, successfully completed Latvia’s Presidency of the Council of the European Union, and the country is in a good shape” with 3.3 per cent rise in economic growth, the wage increase, rising exports and investments being up 6 per cent.

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Bulgaria

 “Bulgaria and Greece’s Energy Ministers are to sign on Thursday the investment agreement to build a gas interconnector that will help bring supplies from Azerbaijan to Bulgaria and further north”, Novinite.com reads. The initial annual capacity of the Interconnector Greece-Brussels (IGB) will be 3-5 bn cubic meters. IGB could potentially deliver gas to Bulgaria (and then, after building additional infrastructure, to Romania) from the Southern Gas Corridor, which will transport it from Azerbaijan to Italy via Turkey, Greece and Albania, and then under the Adriatic. The project is listed among the EU Commission’s Projects of Common Interest (PCI). It will be managed by ICGB, a joint venture of the Bulgarian Energy Holding and IGI Poseidon (Greece). Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borisov and Greece’s Energy Minister Panos Skourletis will attend the ceremony of signing the agreement.

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Lithuania

Lithuanian Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevičius wants to amend the Law on Road Traffic Safety so that it will forbid driving cars after drinking any amount of alcohol. The government will support zero alcohol level limit. “The current law stipulates that the zero alcohol level limit to be adhered by drivers of taxis, motorcycles, quad bikes, commercial vehicles and everyone with driving experience below two years. All other drivers are not allowed to exceed 0.4 per mile alcohol”, Delfi.lt reads.

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Romania

The Romanian government has approved the budget for 2016. Now it has to be approved by the parliament – SEENews Corporate Wire reports. “Changes to the budget plan still can be made”, said government spokesperson Dan Suciu. The planned budget deficit (on cash basis equivalent) is 2.8 per cent of GDP in 2016, although according to European accounting standards the deficit will be 2.95 per cent of GDP. It’s 1.8 per cent more than in 2015. Romania’s budget revenues are expected to grow by 1.6 per cent to EUR51.6 bn. Spending will be up 6.7 per cent.

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Czech Republic

Prague Monitor reports that the Czech Parliament approved the 2016 budget on Wednesday. The bill envisions budget deficit of CZK70bn. The budget will now be submitted to President Milos Zeman for signing.

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What’s up in indexes?

The sharpest growth was only by 0.53 per cent (OMXR) on Wednesday, December 9th. And it was another day of WIG20’s fall. It lost 2.30 percent.

BUX (of Budapest) was up 0.46 per cent on Wednesday, December 9th closing at 23431.58 index points compared with Tuesday’s 23324.90 index points. And from year-end it grew by 40.87 per cent.

BET (of Bucharest Stock Exchange) dropped by 0.46 per cent – to 7035.95 after Tuesday’s drop when it closed at 7068.27 index points (minus 0.46 per cent). From year-end it lost 0.66 per cent.

PX (of Prague) grew by 0.08 per cent on Wednesday, increasing to 931.41 index points. The day before it closed at 930.67 index points. From year-end it dropped by 1.62 per cent.

After dropping by 2.68 per cent on Tuesday, WIG20 (of Warsaw) lost 2.30 per cent on Tuesday, December 9th. It closed at 1773.21 index points. The previous close was at 1781.94 index points. The index fell by 23.43 per cent from year-end.

OMXT (of Tallinn) decreased from 903.10 index points Tuesday to 901.53 index points Wednesday, dropping by 0.17 per cent. But from year-end it’s up 19.40 per cent.

OMXR (of Riga) grew by 0.53 per cent. It increased from 581.05 index points Tuesday to 584.12 index points Thursday. From year-end it’s up 43.16 per cent.

OMXV (of Vilnius) lost 0.44 per cent. On Wednesday it closed at 483.47 index points. The previous close was at 485.61 index points. From year-end it’s up 6.86 per cent.

SAX (of Bratislava) lost 0.22 per cent falling from 298.84 index points Tuesday to 298.18 index points Wednesday. From year-end it’s up 34.12 per cent.

SOFIX (of Sofia) dropped by 0.28 per cent. It decreased from 434.67 index points Tuesday to 433.47 index points Wednesday. And it lost 16.98 per cent from year-end.

UX (of Kyiv) was up 0.30 per cent. The index climbed from 700.19 index points Tuesday to 702.27 index points Wednesday. From year-end it dropped by 32.04 per cent.

CROBEX (of Zagreb Stock Exchange) was up 0.04 per cent on Wednesday. It closed at 1680.02 index points. The previous close was at 1679.34 index points. From year-end it dropped by 3.75 per cent.

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