The Oligarch Problem

Andrew Meier had a good joke about the problems post-Soviet countries face with their oligarchs in his book “Black Earth”: if the two questions that dominated the Soviet-era were “What is to be done?” (Lenin’s famous pamphlet of the same title) and “Who is to blame?” (as nothing in the Soviet Union worked and someone […]

What the post-Brexit Gibraltar deal means

The biggest shift in Spanish-Gibraltarian relations since 1713. The Brexit agreement between Gibraltar, the U.K. and Spain is heavy on symbolism. It provides for the demolition of the 1.2-kilometer physical barrier that encircles the Rock and has been at the center of constant rows among the three governments for decades. The text of the preliminary agreement, […]

Barclays fined £26m for poor treatment of struggling borrowers

Barclays has been hit with a £26m fine for poor treatment of more than 1.5 million struggling borrowers, prompting the City regulator to warn lenders over mistreating customers facing financial hardship during the Covid crisis. Barclays was found to have mistreated business and personal customers who were in financial difficulties and fell behind on credit card […]

Can Turkey’s Gas Discovery Open A New Window?

On Aug. 21, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced that the Turkish drilling ship Fatih had found the country’s largest natural gas reserve in the Tuna-1 area off the Black Sea coast. Reportedly, the reserve discovered in this area is estimated to hold approximately 320 billion cubic meters of gas. For Turkey, a country dependent on imports […]

Azerbaijan To Purchase Turkish-Manufactured Combat Drones

The Azerbaijani government announced on Monday that it would purchase unmanned aerial combat vehicles from Turkey after receiving approval from its parliament. Speaking to a local TV broadcaster about the purchase of new weapons and military vehicles for the armed forces, Azerbaijan’s Minister of Defense Zakir Hasanov said his country sought to purchase Turkish-made combat […]

Regional Concerns, Playing EU Against Turkey Behind Greece’s Growing Hostile Approach

Greece and Turkey, two NATO allies with a history of alternating periods of cooperation and conflicts, once again find themselves in the middle of bilateral tensions. Greece has recently adopted a harsh and denunciatory stance toward Turkey where old and new conflicts have merged. The Cyprus issue, migration crisis, energy exploration activities in the Eastern […]

New Rosneft-Transneft Conflict Demonstrates Chronic Challenges Of Russian Oil Industry

Russia’s largest oil producer Rosneft and the state-owned oil pipeline monopoly Transneft added another page to their long-running confrontation when Rosneft’s CEO, Igor Sechin, complained to President Vladimir Putin, on May 12, about the high transportation fees being charged by the pipeline operator (Kremlin.ru, May 12). Transneft rebuked the allegations immediately, although that did not […]

Europe Must Prepare For Life After Oil

The COVID-19 pandemic is forcing us to leave the fossil fuel era behind. Europe needs to begin preparing for what comes next. Oil prices have crashed. The most visible cause has been the measures taken to contain the COVID-19 pandemic, which have triggered record lows in global oil demand.  Yet the crisis also exposes structural […]

Globalization: Good-Bye To The Hype

Globalisation has resulted in the interdependence of nations through the largely unimpeded transmission of investment capital and information, and integrated business operations. The leading beneficiaries have been the global 1%, and China. While it is too late and not possible to roll back an interconnected world order, globalization as we know it will recede, as […]