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Slovaks in Vienna | Slovakia in Austria | Intercultural Relations

CESEE Outlook: Modest Recovery - EU is Obstacle to Growth – BREXIT Poses Uncertainties

According to the latest prognosis of the Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, the countries of Central, East and Southeast Europe (CESEE) will have a trend growth rate of up to 3% in the period of 2016-2018. This is 1-1½ percentage points higher than average growth in the eurozone. Consumption will be the main growth driver. The Austrian economy is still benefiting from its economic ties with the region. Direct effects of BREXIT on the region will be limited – indirect effects for the European economy as a whole may be considerable.

June 29, 2016

Closing of Visa Takeover Brings EUR 97 Million Pre-Tax Profit to RBI

The expected pretax profit from the cash payment of the transaction will be EUR 97 million. It should be booked under net income from financial investments in the second quarter of 2016. Visa Inc. had announced the takeover of Visa Europe Ltd. in November of 2015. The cash payment of this one-off effect will be split between Slovakia, Romania, Czech Republic, Poland, the RBI head office, Croatia, Bulgaria, Hungary and Zuno.

June 21, 2016

20 Years Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT): Ministerial Meeting at VIC

Marking the 20th anniversary of the signing of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT), a Ministerial Meeting was held at Vienna International Center. Hosting some 40 international organizations, Austria is a hub for the promotion of peace, safety and security, sustainable development and the fight against crime, drug abuse and terrorism.

June 20, 2016

Long-Distance Coach Operator Flixbus to Compete with ÖBB Austrian Railways

Austrian state-run rail company ÖBB Austrian Railways is facing increasing competition of German mobility provider Flixbus which has just launched its third connection for Austria's regional capital cities, between Graz and Salzburg. In January 2016 FlixBus announced its entry to the markets of Central and Eastern Europe with the new branch FlixBus CEE. This includes six countries (Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Poland, Slovenia and Croatia) with new lines in the making. () am

April 27, 2016

RBI Not to Sell Zuno Bank to ABH Holdings

The sale of Raiffeisen Bank International’s (RBI) direct bank Zuno to the Alfa Banking Group will not be concluded because ABH Holdings withdrew from the contract of sale.

March 1, 2016

The Western Balkans Conference Which Led to Row Over Worsening Refugee Crisis

Convened on the initiative of Austrian Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz and Austrian Minister of the Interior Johanna Mikl-Leitner, the Western Balkans conference “Managing Migration Together” was held at the Federal Ministry of the Interior in Vienna. 18 foreign and interior ministers from the Western Balkans attended the conference. The participants included the foreign and interior ministers of Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Slovenia.

February 26, 2016

Erste Group Provides Blackstone with a 5-Year EUR 91 Million Facility

Erste Group provides Blackstone with a 5-year EUR 91 million facility to acquire 12 logistics assets. The 265000 sqm portfolio covers 12 standing logistics investments located in Hungary (5), Romania (4), Poland (2) and Slovakia (1), as well as land reserves.

February 22, 2016

Central and Eastern Europe's Financial Elite Gathered at the CEE Forum in Vienna

The 21st Euromoney Central and Eastern European Forum ended in Vienna today, where 1000 delegates from the region joined local and international investors to help plan, debate and analyze the economic agenda for the region for the year ahead. The vast majority of the delegates have a negative outlook for the year 2016. Only one of the participants expects that this year CEE will grow more than 3.5%.

January 20, 2016

US Company Contour Moves European Headquarters from Paris to Vienna

The Vienna-based European headquarters will be the strategic centre for all thermal and renewable energy facilities in Austria, Italy, Czech Republic, Romania, Poland, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Armenia, Spain, Northern Ireland and Ukraine.

December 11, 2015

Austrian Ministry of Foreign Affairs: Council of Ministers Places 27 New Diplomats at Head of Embassies

The Council of Ministers of the Austrian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has decided to place 27 new Austrian diplomats at head of Austrian Embassies worldwide.

December 10, 2015

Journalism Award “Writing for CEE 2015” Goes to Martin Leidenfrost

The EUR 5,000 Writing for CEE journalist prize has been awarded for the twelfth time. Journalists from all round Europe – including Northern Europe, Central and Eastern Europe, South Eastern Europe and the CIS countries – have been invited to submit their works. The Austrian Journalist Martin Leidenfrost wins the “Writing for CEE 2015” award for his column "Expedition Europe". At the award ceremony writer and honorary guest Karl-Markus Gauß touched on the discovery of Europe and SEEMO Secretary General Oliver Vujovic said, that Europe faces new boundaries and divisions.

November 18, 2015 · Updated: November 20, 2015; 19:00

OSCE: Peace and Stability in Europe Impossible without Protecting Human Rights

Protecting and promoting human rights, including the rights of persons belonging to national minorities, is inextricably linked to the preservation of peace and stability within and between States, participants said today at the opening of a two-day OSCE meeting in Vienna.

October 29, 2015

Austria will Remain an Asylum Country with Tradition

Since 1945 more than two million refugees have come to Austria, whereby almost 700,000 have remained here - that is about 9 per cent of the total population of Austria. Every second refugee had a different mother tongue than German. The refugee crises occurred in a mysterious sequence, as every twelve years, large waves of refugees arrived in Austria: 1956, 1968, 1980 and 1992.

October 28, 2015

How Can Exporters Benefit from the "Go-International Initiative" of the Austrian Chamber of Commerce?

Even in a challenging global economic environment, exports remain the driving force behind the Austrian economy. The go-international initiative of the Austrian Chamber of Commerce encourages companies to step across the border by offering advisory services, events and support, as well as making it easier for existing exporters to enter additional foreign markets.

October 19, 2015

Current State of Relations between NATO and Austria

NATO-Austria relations are conducted through the Partnership for Peace framework, which Austria joined in 1995. NATO and Austria actively cooperate in peace support operations, and have developed practical cooperation in a range of areas. NATO views Austria as an effective partner and contributor to international security, which shares key values such as the promotion of international security, democracy and human rights. Austria on the other hand selects areas of practical cooperation with NATO that match joint objectives.

October 16, 2015

CEE in the Autumn of 2015 is the New Safe Haven

The key conclusion of UniCredit’s CEE Quarterly 4Q 2015 is that the CEE region, despite its heterogeneity, looks better positioned than most other large emerging markets to cope with potential challenges. In particular they found that market volatility spiked in 3Q15, with the uncertainty surrounding the anticipated Fed rate hike augmented by growing worries about a “hard landing” in China.

September 25, 2015

Bilderberg 2015: Full List of All 133 Participants

The full list of all 133 attendees to the top secret Bilderberg Group conference 2015 has been released (see below). The Austrians participating are René Benko, Oscar Bronner, Heinz Fischer, Alfred Gusenbauer, Erich Hampel, Wolfgang Hesoun, Gerhard Roiss, Rudolf Scholten and Karl Sevelda.

June 12, 2015 · Updated: June 12, 2015; 17:45

The Bilderberg Group - Background and Criticism

The first Bilderberg conference dates back to May 1954, when it was held at the Hotel de Bilderberg in Oosterbeek, Netherlands. Partly because of its working methods to ensure strict privacy, the Bilderberg Group has been criticised for its lack of transparency and accountability.

June 11, 2015

Bilderberg 2015: The "World Government" Meets in Austria

A select group of global elite is gathering today at the Interalpen-Hotel Tyrol in Telfs-Buchen, Austria. The 63rd Bilderberg conference is a super secret annual conference where they can discuss politics, economics and foreign policy freely. A total of around 140 participants from 22 countries have confirmed their attendance at the Bilderberg conference 2015. As ever, a diverse group of political leaders and experts from industry and finance have been invited. This year the list includes nine Austrians. Key talking points on the agenda include the Ukrainian crisis, Greece, Middle East and Terrorism (see detailed list below). Security is tight - participants as well as protesters and journalists will have to deal with the Austrian anti terror squad "Cobra". After 1979 it's the second time that the conference takes place in Austria.

June 11, 2015 · Updated: June 11, 2015; 19:00

Analysis: Austrian Economy Falls Behind Eurozone Average

The latest "Attractiveness Survey" from consultancy Ernst & Young Global Limited shows, that espite strong fundamentals, Austria’s economy lost some ground on the Eurozone average in 2014, with growth of just 0.4% compared with 0.9% for the Eurozone as a whole. This comparative weakness will also continue in 2015, with Austria’s GDP growth estimated at 1.1%, against 1.5% in the Eurozone. This is despite a boost from lower energy prices, quantitative easing from the European Central Bank (ECB) and a weaker euro.

June 1, 2015

Swedish Embassy in Vienna has New Premises

The Swedish Embassy/UN representation and the OSCE-delegation have moved to new premises with extensive entertainment facilities, Schwedenhaus Wien. This represents a new and unique concept which could be a model for how Sweden will be represented abroad in the future. As the Embassy also represents Sweden in Slovakia and Slovenia, Schwedenhaus Wien will have both a regional and multilateral (UN and OSCE) approach.

May 29, 2015

Analysis: The Eurovision Song Contest 2015 in Vienna

The Eurovision Song Contest 2015 has been the 60th edition of the annual Eurovision Song Contest musical event. The contest took place in Vienna and followed Conchita Wurst's victory in the 2014 edition with her song "Rise Like a Phoenix". The song "Heroes" by Måns Zelmerlöw took the winning spot in the 60th Eurovision Song Contest in Vienna with 365 points. The 2016 Eurovision Song Contest will therefore be held in Sweden.

May 16, 2015 · Updated: May 28, 2015; 08:00

EBRD Sees Mixed Outlook for CESEE Countries in 2015-16

The outlook for economies in central and south eastern Europe is improving on the back of eurozone monetary easing but prospects further to the east of the transition region have worsened, as the impact of Russia’s recession intensifies.

May 14, 2015

Quality of Living Rankings: Vienna Tops the List Again

Vienna remaines at the top of the 2015 Quality of Living Rankings, boasting the best quality of living for expatriates. In the top 5 there are two other European cities, Zurich (place 2) and Munich (place 4). Also Auckland (3rd) and Vancouver (5th) are among the top five cities.

March 4, 2015

Global Peace Index: Austria is Third Most Peaceful Country

The latest Global Peace Index analyses the state of peace around the world. It identifies the most and least peaceful countries, trends in violence and conflict, and calculates the economic impact of violence. The top three most peaceful countries are Iceland, Denmark and Austria. Small and stable democracies make up the top ten most peaceful countries. New Zealand, Canada and Japan are the only non-European countries in the top ten.

March 4, 2015

List of National Days of the home countries of all foreign Missions and Delegations in Vienna, Austria

The Vindobona table below is an updated list of National Days of all nations, which belong to at least one of following categories: Foreign Missions and Delegations in Vienna, Austria; Diplomatic Corps and other representations in Austria; International Organizations in Vienna and Permanent Missions; Missions and Delegations to the OSCE.

February 11, 2015 · Updated: March 14, 2016; 08:12

UniCredit Private Banking Receives Euromoney Awards

UniCredit Private Banking has been recognized for its services, winning 14 awards in different regional and local categories in Euromoney magazine´s Private Banking Survey 2015.

February 10, 2015

Austria is Celebrating 60 Years of United Nations Membership in 2015

Austria became a member of the United Nations in 1955 and is celebrating 60 years of UN membership in 2015. 70 years ago, the United Nations were founded in San Francisco.

February 5, 2015

George Soros: "A New Policy to Rescue Ukraine"

Soros is calling on members of the European Union to behave as countries indirectly at war with Russia and to provide Ukraine with $50 billion to defend itself and kick-start political reforms. Russian President Vladimir Putin's imperial ambition has unintentionally brought into being a new Ukraine that is adamantly opposed to endemic corruption and inefficient government. By offering assistance, Europe can foster an open society in Ukraine and protect itself from Russian aggression.

January 22, 2015

Vienna Congress comsult 2015: "Power of Regions"

“Power of Regions“ is the topic of the Vienna Congress com•sult 2015 which is taking place today at Vienna's House of Industry. Distinguished participants from industry, politics and the business community such as F.W. de Klerk, Mohamed El Baradei, Author Benjamin R. Barber, Václav Klaus and Iain Begg are discussing the principle of regionality and its future in Europe.

January 20, 2015

Swiss Franc Soars as Currency Ceiling Discontinued

The Swiss franc has soared against the euro after Switzerland's central bank abandoned a ceiling it put in place a few years ago. Swiss franc loans in Austria make up more than 90 percent of the 25 billion euros in foreign-currency loans. Traders were stunned as the move was completely unexpected.

January 15, 2015

Slovak Republic Issues 12-Year Eurobond Worth EUR 1.5 Billion

Slovakia’s first syndicated EUR transaction of the year attracted a total demand from more than 200 investors which reached almost EUR 5.5 billion.

January 15, 2015

Ivica Dačić in Vienna: Serbia Takes Over OSCE Chairmanship from Switzerland

The new OSCE Chairperson, Serbia’s Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic, spoke today at the inaugural Permanent Council meeting of Serbia's OSCE Chairmanship Vienna. He revealed his Chairmanship priorities pledging to rebuild trust and confidence in the OSCE region of 57 participating states.

January 15, 2015

Carl Bildt: "The cohesion of the EU is the most important objective to achieve"

How Europe should react to the surrounding areas of conflict in East and South, was debated on Sunday. More realism, less idealism for the European Union is what Ivan Krastev, Fyodor Lukyanov, Carl Bildt and Ana Palacio concluded on Sunday at the Burgtheater in Vienna.

January 12, 2015

Government Debt Increased to 82.6% of GDP in Austria and to 92.7% in Euro Area

At the end of the second quarter of 2014, the government debt to GDP ratio in the euro area (EA18) stood at 92.7%, compared with 91.9% at the end of the first quarter of 2014. Austria's government debt rose to 82.6 percent of GDP in Q2 2014 from 81.3 percent in Q1.

October 23, 2014

Lower Austria's Ecoplus International Celebrates 10 Years and 1500 Executed Projects

The EU's eastward enlargement brought Lower Austria into the center of a new, dynamic economic area. In order to make use of the chances which emerged for the lower Austrian economy, Ecoplus International GmbH in cooperation with the Raiffeisenlandesbank Niederösterreich-Wien was set up. 10 years later the subsidiary has already overseen 1500 projects.

October 16, 2014

CEE Sovereign Bond Market Among Best Investment Destinations in Europe

The CEE sovereign bonds are among the best investments in Europe this year. High returns and low volatility increase investor appeal. The CEE sovereign bond market is 5th largest in continental Europe. Romania emerges as CEE regional champion among local currency bonds.

October 2, 2014

Business Indicator: Growing Geopolitical Uncertainty Levels the Economic Outlook Down

Bank Austria has published its latest "Business Indicator" on the Austrian economy. The analysts of Bank Austria believe, that after a weak first six months, the economic recovery continues to find it difficult to get out of the starting blocks. The growing uncertainty fuelled by the Russia-Ukraine crisis was reflected in another decline for Bank Austria’s Business Indicator in August. The indicator has been trending downwards slightly for half a year, and now sits at its lowest point since last summer of just 0.2 points.

September 18, 2014

Mid Europa Partners' New Fund to Invest EUR 800 Mln in CEE

Mid Europa Partners, the British private equity firm focused on buyouts in Central & Eastern Europe, announced the final closing of Mid Europa Fund IV at €800 million, complemented by an additional pre-allocated co-investment program of €650 million. Fund IV represents the largest dedicated fund to the CEE Region raised in the last 5 years.

September 5, 2014

Poland's Donald Tusk to Become European Council President

Current council president Herman Van Rompuy tweeted the announcement from the EU summit. Mr Tusk, Poland's centre-right prime minister since 2007, will become the European Council's president. Italy's Federica Mogherini, a centre-left politician and foreign minister will replace the UK's Catherine Ashton as EU foreign policy chief.

August 30, 2014

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

Forecast for CESEE Countries (Webinar)

Central, Eastern and Southeastern Europe (CESEE) have been strongly affected by the economic crisis. However now there are signs of an improving economic climate and growth rates will again be above the EU average. The current situation in the Ukraine and potential difficulties between the EU and Russia constitute a downside risk.

June 24, 2014

EBRD Provides €20 Mio Loan to Slovakia for Sustainable Energy Projects

The EBRD is deepening its support for sustainable energy investments in the Slovak Republic with a €20m loan to Slovenska Sporitelna, a.s. (SLSP), one of the country’s leading banks. The funds will be on-lent to private companies for renewable energy projects and energy efficiency in industry and buildings.

June 16, 2014

CEE-Initiative: Strengthening Investment Fund Business in Central- and Eastern Europe (CEE)

The Hungarian association BAMOSZ and the Austrian association VÖIG initiated a closer collaboration and tighter co-operation between fund associations in CEE, the so-called „CEE Initiative“. The member associations of the „CEE Initiative“ are (in alphabetical order): Austria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Greece, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia and Ukraine.

June 16, 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

Yakunin: Broad-Gauge System from Vladivostock to Vienna to Be Established

Vladimir Yakunin, head of the Russian Railways (RZD), wants to stick to his strategic plans and establish an uninterrupted rail link between Vienna and Vladivostock.

May 24, 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