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Austria - European Union Political News

Russia Orders Agricultural Import Bans in Sanction Retaliation

Vladimir Putin signed a decree limiting or banning imports of agricultural products from countries which have imposed sanctions on Russia, the Kremlin's press service announced. It is estimated that following CEE/SEE countries will be hit by the retaliatory sanctions: Romania, Serbia, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Slovenia, Bulgaria, Ukraine, Brussels, Croatia, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.

August 6, 2014

Analysis: Russia - Assessment of EU and Tightened US Sanctions

Special analysis covering the most recent escalation in terms of Western economic and financial sanctions against Russia: EU and US sending bold diplomatic signals without inflicting too much near-term economic and financial damage. In comparison to the US sanctions by the EU are capped in duration. Recent escalation adds to uncertainty in doing business with Russia, which is an ultimate goal of sanctions. Near-term impact of current sanctions still limited, which implies a risk that they may remain for longer.

July 31, 2014

Austrian FDI: Current Developments 1Q 2014

In the first quarter of 2014, Austrian FDI abroad reached a value of 2.8 billion euros, which is less by about 30% than in the same period of 2013. Foreign direct investments in the same period into Austria stood at 1.4 billion euros. This is about 37% less than in the same period of last year.

July 29, 2014

Cost of Living Rankings: CEE Capitals Cheaper, Vienna is 32nd Most Expensive City

The Mercer's 2014 Cost of Living Rankings have been published and cover 211 cities across five continents. While Western European cities have all risen in the rankings mainly due to the strengthening of the Euro against the US dollar, most cities in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE), however have fallen in the ranking as a result of local currencies depreciating against the US dollar. Bratislava (#84), Prague (#92), Kiev (#98), Ljubljana (#116), Zagreb (#120), Budapest (#135), Warsaw (#142), Belgrade (#184).

July 25, 2014

Albania Receives EU Candidate Status

At the General Affairs Council meeting in Luxembourg, Ministers from the EU Member States have agreed – based on the recommendation by the European Commission to grant EU candidate status to Albania, subject to endorsement by EU heads of states at the forthcoming European Council on Friday in Brussels.

June 26, 2014

Analysis: The South Stream Gas Pipeline

Due to the signing of the South Stream agreement between OMV and Gazprom for the Austrian part of the pipeline during Putin's visit to Vienna, we take a look at the background of the project.

June 25, 2014

Austria's Foreign Policy on the Western Balkans

Due to centuries of political, cultural and economic interrelations, Austrian foreign policy has always attached particular importance to the Balkans. The prime goal of Austrian foreign policy is to support the transformation of the Western Balkans into a zone of stability.

June 4, 2014

TTIP-Myths and Realities According to AmCham Austria

The American Chamber of Commerce in Austria (AmCham Austria) promotes the expansion and strengthening of trade and commerce relations between Austria and the US. Talks on a future EU-US trade deal started in July 2013 and are set to continue throughout 2014. The talks are part of a trade and investment deal, known as the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, or TTIP.

June 3, 2014

Austria: Western Balkans Representatives are Meeting in Vienna

The Western Balkans Conference and the Central European Initiative (CEI) Ministerial Meeting are currently discussing questions regarding the EU enlargement, the role of the EU as a peace project and the economic situation in the Western Balkans.

June 3, 2014

Austrian EU Commissioner Hahn Blames British PM Cameron for Opening Doors to Ukip

Hahn argues, that David Cameron is to blame for his own defeat at the hands of the eurosceptic UKIP at the European elections.

May 31, 2014

Boyden Partners Met in Vienna to Discuss Emerging Markets Strategies

The annual global Boyden conference took place in Vienna. Despite the current political crisis in Ukraine the headhunting company sees good prospects of Austrian enterprises and managers.

May 23, 2014

Switzerland: IMD Releases the World Competitiveness Yearbook Ranking 2014

The US leads, Europe recovers, and big emerging markets struggle.

May 22, 2014

Exporttag: Meet All Austrian Trade Delegates at the Export Day 2014

On June 24, the Export Day (Exporttag) of the Austrian Chamber of Commerce (WKO) will take place in Vienna. Economic delegates from all over the world will be present.

May 20, 2014

Journalism Prize “Writing for CEE 2014” Inviting Submissions

Journalists from all over Europe are invited to submit entries.

May 19, 2014

Edi Rama: "If Europe Decides Not To Need Muslim Balkan States, Terrible Things Will Happen"

The Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama visited the Bruno Kreisky Forum in Vienna.

May 13, 2014

Croatia to Place New Eurobond by June

The Croatian government plans to issue a Eurobond until the beginning of June.

May 9, 2014

Calls for European Energy Union Become Louder

Polish PM Tusk called for a European energy union. His Hungarian counterpart supports the idea.

May 9, 2014

EU Council Trying to Find a Way Out of Ukraine Crisis

Ahead of the European Council, which is currently taking place in Vienna under the Austrian presidency, Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz declared not to expect a solution for the conflict in Ukraine.

May 6, 2014

Vranitzky: Joining EU One of the Most Courageous Steps

A symposium showed the EU Accession process of Austria in the early 1990’s in a new light.

May 6, 2014

Agenda Austria 2020: Economy = State

The think tank Agenda Austria 2020 is currently tackling the question what the “economy expects from the state”.

May 5, 2014

Federation of Industries: “Industrial Compact“ for European Competitiveness

The Austrian Federation of Industries (IV) considers the EU entry of Austria as the basis of prosperty and economic growth in the past years. However, now reforms are required to catch up to a global level.

May 5, 2014

Slovenian Banka Celje Needs Further State Aids

Because of the failed capital increase in the amount of € 160m, Banka Celje is requiring further state capital.

May 2, 2014

Fitch Upgrades Rating for Slovenia

Fitch Ratings has revised the Outlook on Slovenia's Long-term foreign and local currency Issuer Default Ratings (IDR) to Stable from Negative and affirmed the IDRs at 'BBB+'.

May 2, 2014

New Serbian Government Wants Speedy EU Accession

The new Serbian government is determined to accelerate the EU accession progress.

May 2, 2014

Majority of Czech Entrepreneurs Want Euro

According to a survey, more than three quarters of Czech entrepreneurs are in favor of the country adopting the Euro.

April 30, 2014

Austria Gives up Bank Secret for United States

Austria and the US have signed an agreement for the exchange of fiscal data. However, the agreement could be renewed soon.

April 30, 2014

Austria: Industrial Production with Growth Potential

Austrian industry continues to grow - but somewhat less dynamically than at the turn of the year.

April 30, 2014

Hypo Group Further Losses to Be Expected

Huge losses by the sale of the SEE banking network could be expected.

April 30, 2014

EU Enlargement: A Success Story for Central Europe

Austria is one of the main beneficiaries of the EU enlargement of 2004.

April 30, 2014

Situation for Austrian Banks in Russia is “Sensitive”

According to the latest statistics, Austrian banks are considerably more engaged in Russia than assumed so far. Debts to domestic financial institutes amount to € 50bn.

April 29, 2014

Raiffeisen Bank International AG - SWOT Analysis & Company Report May 2014

This new report contains in depth information and data about Raiffeisen Bank International AG and its operations and markets. It contains an overview, business and strategy description, financial ratios, valuation & forecast data and a SWOT analysis.

April 25, 2014

Do Taxes Justify a Relocation of Business?

Tax sensitive business operations should be relocated to other areas if necessary, according to the head of Erste Bank Austria.

April 24, 2014

Eder: Policy-Makers Have to Make Decisions

Wolfgang Eder, CEO of Austrian steel manufacturer voestalpine, claims not to have heard anything from the Austrian policy makers after he raised criticizm with regard to the Austrian business location.

April 24, 2014

Struggling Insurance Industry

Despite favorable results last year the European insurance market has to face a number of adverse factors.

April 23, 2014

Serbia: EU Negotiations Important for Reforms

According to Tanja Miscevic, chief negotiator in Serbia’s EU accession talks, the opening of the Chapters 23 and 24 are crucial for the reform process in the Western Balkan country.

April 22, 2014

Slovenia: “Worst Thing if Nobody Dare Do Anything”

Finance Minister Cufer stressed that financial institutes needed stable guidance and confidence to continue their restructuring paths.

April 17, 2014

Austria: RLB OÖ Still Threatening to Leave

According to managing director of Raiffeisenlandesbank Oberösterreich (RLB OÖ) Heinrich Schaller, the tax burden is too high in Austria. The bank is still threatening to leave for Germany if the bank levy will not be changed.

April 17, 2014

Poland: Excessive Deficit Procedure for Two More Years

The Polish government expects the EU Commission to cancel the Excessive Deficit Procedure in “less than two years” due to the measures applied so far the continuing of economic recovery.

April 16, 2014

Austria: RLB OÖ Rows Bank on Threat to Leave

Last year regional lender RLB OÖ (Raiffeisen Landesbank Oberösterreich), part of Raiffeisen group, saw a decline of six percent in its balance sheet totals while the operating results increased by almost three percent.

April 16, 2014

Slovakia as a Role Model?

In an interview with Austrian daily “Wirtschaftsblatt”, Tomas Malatinsky, Economy Minister of Slovakia, talked about budget discipline, investments and tax policy.

April 16, 2014

Fricke: “Man Needs Relatively Little Bank”

Fricke, chief economist at the European Climate Foundation and author of “Wie viel Bank braucht der Mensch?" (How much bank does man need?)

April 15, 2014

“Bank Rescue is a Crime”

Martin Ehrenhauser, leading candidate of the Austrian electorial alliance “Europa Anders”, which is running for the EU elections, has voiced harsh criticism about the saving of financial institutes.

April 14, 2014

Poland: No Tax Hike Required

According to Poland’s Finance Minister, a tax increase is not required this year.

April 14, 2014

Slovenia: Head of NLB Throws in Towel

On Friday France Ahar, President of the supervisory board of the biggest lender of Slovenia, state-controlled NLB, handed in his resignation.

April 14, 2014

Austria: VBAG Sells Malta Affiliate

Partly nationalized VBAG (Österreichische Volksbanken AG) has sold its banking affiliate VB Malta to Maltese Mediterranean Bank (MedBank).

April 11, 2014

Serbia’s Goal to Join EU until 2020 “Realistic”

According to former German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder, Serbia’s aim to become a member of the European Union until 2020 is realistic.

April 11, 2014

Moldova: Urgent Call for EU-Membership

Getting out of the zone of uncertainty and instability, this is the aim of the Moldovan Prime Minister Iurie Leanca.

April 10, 2014

Poland: Growth Forecast Raised Again

The International Monetary Fund has raised the forcast of GDP growth in Poland.

April 9, 2014

Austria: Government Wants “Restrictive Budget Performance”

Today the Austrian government has decided upon a “restrictive budget performance.

April 8, 2014

Poland: Banks to Enhance Bond Issues

The Polish banks are expected to increase the value of bond issues in the next years.

April 8, 2014