Robert Fico: EU needs new vision as it is falling in love with itself

The Prime Minister of Slovakia, Robert Fico (European Council, CC BY-NC-ND)

Poland’s first offshore wind farm planned

In Bulgaria gross foreign debt down 1.3 per cent y/y in May 2016

Zero EU fund absorption from the 2014-2020 allocation in Romania

Slovakia

Robert Fico, the Prime Minister of Slovakia – that holds the EU’s rotating presidency – met in Bratislava with Theresa May, the new British Prime Minister. After talks on July 29th, he expressed his conviction that the European Union (UE) should use Brexit to re-invent and strengthen itself. According to Fico EU should use this time to reconsider its global role. A new vision of Europe should be created.

CNBC quotes Fico: “I have always said that the EU seems to be falling in love with itself (…) We wanted to be the best in the world. But it seems many regions in world are far ahead of us. Let’s use Brexit as a good occasion to reevaluate this (…)We simply have to author a new vision for our people otherwise we will see further fragmentation and destabilization of European political systems.”

At the same time May emphasized that Britain would not trigger Article 50, the formal mechanism for leaving the EU, to begin exit talks before the end of 2016.

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Poland

The first offshore wind farm is being planned. It will be developed on the Baltic Sea. The investor is Polish Polenergia – a company that invests in the construction of wind farms. As the Polish Radio informs the group says it currently has 7 onshore farms.

Polenergia wants to erect 120 turbines with a total capacity of 1200 MW about 23km north of the Polish coastal municipality of Łeba.

Before it starts, the investor must fulfill a number of conditions which aim to minimize the environmental impact of the wind farm during its construction, operation, and decommissioning. It include monitoring the impact of the project on fish, mussels, marine mammals, birds and bats.

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Bulgaria

Bulgaria’s gross foreign debt reached EUR35.25bn at the end of May 2016. It grew by 3.4 per cent from the end of 2015. But y/y it dropped by 1.3 per cent.

According to the preliminary estimates of the Bulgarian National Bank (BNB) total gross foreign debt at May-end was equivalent to 76.1 per cent of GDP 2016 forecast.

Long-term debt reached EUR27.70bn (up 5.7 per cent from 2015 FYE and down 0.8 per cent y/y). Short-term debt dropped by 4.1 per cent from end-2015, reaching EUR7.56bn (down 2.8 per cent from end-2015).

Novinite.com also reports general government’s gross foreign debt totaled EUR6.67bn as at end-May 2016 (up 19.6 per cent from end-2015). According to the BNB this is mostly due to the issue of a EUR1.994bn dual-tranche bond on international capital markets.

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Romania

Romania Insider informs the country hasn’t managed to draw any EU funds from the 2014-2020 financial allocation. The absorption rate estimated for the big programs for this year is zero.

According to the portal, the government didn’t informed the European Commission, as has been asked to do, of its estimates on the EU funds it expects to draw in 2016 and 2017. What’s more, the government doesn’t expect to get any money this year through its biggest EU funded programs: for big infrastructure projects (EUR11.8bn worth of funds) and for regional development (EUR8.25bn). The programs are said to be blocked due to problems with the IT system. The system is necessary for accrediting the management authorities that coordinate the EU funded programs. Romania Insider informs: “Without having these management authorities accredited with the European Commission, Romania can’t send payment requests for 2014-2020 funds”.

EU funds minister Cristian Ghinea hopes to have the IT system functional in October. He blames the former Prime Minister Victor Ponta and the local MP Sebastian Ghita for the situation.

According to Romania Insider the ministry has launched calls for projects through three operational programs that don’t depend so much on the IT system. Romania hopes to draw some EUR137m worth of funds from the 2014-2020 allocation.

The European Commission has allotted Romania over EUR30bn to spend in the 2014-2020 period.

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What’s up in indexes

BUX (of Budapest) dropped by 0.55 per cent – falling from 27781.05 index points Wednesday, July 27th to 27628.47 index points Thursday, July 28th. From year-end it’s up 15.50 per cent.

BET (of Bucharest Stock Exchange) dropped by 0.49 per cent – falling from 6727.32 index points Wednesday, July 27th to 6694.09 index points Thursday, July 28th. From year-end it dropped by 4.43 per cent.

PX (of Prague Stock Exchange) dropped by 0.69 per cent d/d and by 7.22 per cent from year-end. The index decreased from 893.42 index points Wednesday, July 27th to 887.26 index points Thursday, July 28th. 

WIG20 (of Warsaw) dropped by 0.51 per cent d/d and by 3.80 per cent from year-end. The index decreased from 1797.63 index points Wednesday, July 27th to 1788.51 index points Thursday, July 28th.

OMXT (of Tallinn) dropped by 1.02 per cent – falling from 1014.04 index points Wednesday, July 27th to 1003.68 index points Thursday, July 28th. From year-end it’s up 11.65 per cent.

OMXR (of Riga) increased from 639.59 index points Wednesday, July 27th to 641.94 index points Thursday, July 28th. So it’s up 0.37 per cent d/d and up 8.01 per cent from year-end. 

OMXV (of Vilnius) dropped by 0.33 per cent – falling from 547.92 index points Wednesday, July 27th to 546.13 index points Thursday, July 28th. From year-end it’s up 12.37 per cent.

SAX (of Bratislava) dropped by 0.17 per cent – falling from 310.23 index points Wednesday, July 27th to 309.71 index points Thursday, July 28th. From year-end it’s up 5.94 per cent.

SOFIX (of Sofia) increased from 456.98 index points Wednesday, July 27th to 457.78 index points Thursday, July 28th. So it’s up 0.18 per cent. From year-end it dropped by 0.68 per cent.

UX (of Kyiv) was up 0.54 per cent d/d and up 5.70 per cent from year-end. The index increased from 721.07 index points Wednesday, July 27th to 724.98 index points Thursday, July 28th. 

CROBEX (of Zagreb Stock Exchange) dropped by 0.15 per cent – falling from 1767.19 index points Wednesday, July 27th to 1764.47 index points Thursday, July 28th. From year-end it’s up 4.43 per cent.

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