Mongolia: A Case Study in Foreign Direct Investment

We had a chance to speak with Marius Toime, who is currently a project finance partner at Berwin Leighton Paisner’s office in Singapore, where he specializes in mining contracts and financing in the Asia Pacific Region and is a noted expert on investment in Mongolia, on which he has written extensively. SD: As you noted…

Ukraine: Energy Minister Seeks to Double Gazprom Transit Fees

Ukrainian officials will meet today with Russian officials and representatives from state-owned energy giant Gazprom to discuss Russian natural gas supplies to Ukraine. There is no clear timetable for the talks, as quarreling between the two sides has persisted and indications are that myriad issues are still unresolved. Ukrainian Energy Minister Volodymyr Demchyshyn recently stated…

Iran Deal: No signatures this week

Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif and lead negotiator Abbas Araqchi have dismissed the likelihood for a signed deal this week, citing more issues to be hammered out before all necessary signatories will be gathered to formalize the deal. The key item to look for, according to Zarif, was when all foreign ministers of the P5+1…

Russia Rejects Return of Crimea, Prepares War Games

Russia has officially ruled out withdrawing from Crimea and gifting the land back to the Ukrainian state, the Russian Defense Ministry reported today. The statement likely will come as hardly a shock to most observers, and was coupled by a statement reaffirming the claim that the region is one “of the Russian Federation” and “not…

Russia: Putin reappears in public

After much speculation, Russian President Vladimir Putin has made another public appearance, ending the rumors of his sickness or demise that prompted many news articles over the weekend. This initial appearance is a state visit from Bishkek by President Almzbek Atambayev of Kyrgyzstan. The hashtag #Putinumer spread over Russian twitter users. The huge amount of…

CTSO Announces Readiness to Deploy Troops to Tajikistan

The Collective Security Treaty Organization is an intergovernmental military alliance comprised of six the six members of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) – Russia, Armenia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan – and which receives the majority of its financing from Russia. Recently, CTSO Secretary General and Russian general Nikolay Bordyuzha announced the organization’s ability…

Ukraine: IMF bailout program approved

The IMF has agreed to funnel some $10 billion in additional assistance funds into Ukraine’s economy as part of a larger four year bailout program. The fund’s board approved a $17.5 billion loan with tranche payments of some $5 billion next week and the other $5 in the next month for Ukraine to borrow against.…