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Eastern Europe

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  • *Russia denies seeking confrontation over Ukraine. MUENSTER, Germany, June 22- The United States said on Monday it would contribute special operations forces, intelligence and other high-end military assets to a new NATO rapid response force that aims in part to deter any future actions by Russia. Russia's intervention over Ukraine has put NATO allies in...

  • MOSCOW— The Russian state-controlled company building the country's new space center has dismissed a sub-contractor after it failed to pay wages to more than 80 workers, leading them to go on strike to call attention to their plight. The problems are just the latest to befall the construction of the Vostochny Cosmodrome, which will give Russia its own facility...

  • Officials in Albania, Bulgaria, Macedonia, Romania and Serbia say they have, in essence, quarantined the local banks by cordoning off their capital so even if the Greek parent collapses, the subsidiaries will survive. "It's not good when there is a fire in your neighbour's house," said Levon Hampartzoumian, chairman of the association of banks in Bulgaria, though he...

  • London, June 22- A world anti-money laundering body has deleted all trace of an alert it issued last week warning that financial institutions had not done enough to police suspicious financial activity by officials at FIFA, soccer's global governing body. The alert, on the website of the Paris- based Financial Action Task Force, was originally posted on June 16,...

  • MOSCOW, June 22- Russia plans to extend a ban on Western food imports for six months starting from early August and may add new products to the list, in retaliation to extended European sanctions against Moscow, officials said on Monday. European Union foreign ministers extended economic sanctions against Russia until Jan. 31 on Monday, keeping up pressure on...

  • *Serbia, Bulgaria, Macedonia seen most exposed to crisis. BUDAPEST, June 22- Central European markets firmed on Monday, with Hungary's forint jumping almost 1 percent on expectations a new Greek plan to avert bankruptcy can persuade creditors to unlock frozen aid. But the Greek troubles could hit some markets, especially Serbia and Bulgaria, and to a lesser extent...

  • LONDON, June 22- A committee of Ukraine's bondholders said on Monday that a debt restructuring plan proposed by Kiev was based on IMF estimates that were not yet publicly available, adding it hoped to meet with the Fund and Ukraine's government soon. Ukraine is negotiating with foreign bondholders to restructure $23 billion of debt as part of a broader...

  • MOSCOW, June 22- Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a decree on transferring a 25 percent plus one share stake in medium-sized oil producer Bashneft to the region of Bashkortostan, Interfax news agency said on Monday. A Moscow court transferred shares in Bashneft from Sistema- a conglomerate owned by billionaire businessman Vladimir Yetuvshenkov-...

  • Central Europe's trade links with Greece are weak so the economic fallout should be limited if the talks fail and Athens defaults and drops out of the euro zone. But the Greek troubles could hit some markets, especially Serbia and Bulgaria, and to a lesser extent Romania, where Greek banks are active. "The possibility of a Greek euro exit and default raises...

  • EU extends sanctions against Russia by 6 months Monday, 22 Jun 2015 | 4:01 AM ET

    LUXEMBOURG— The European Union on Monday extended economic sanctions against Russia until January to keep pressure on Moscow over the conflict in eastern Ukraine, drawing a rebuke and a warning of retaliation from Russian officials. An EU statement said the decision was taken without debate by the bloc's foreign ministers at a meeting in Luxembourg, in...

  • CARACAS, June 21- Venezuelan state oil company PDVSA said on Sunday it had signed a raft of investment agreements with top Russian oil producer Rosneft, including a plan to create a joint venture to produce natural gas in the South American country. The "Strategic Plan for Investments" also includes development of new infrastructure to improve the existing oil...

  • Polish airline cancels flights after hacker attack Sunday, 21 Jun 2015 | 3:58 PM ET

    WARSAW, Poland— Poland's LOT airline has been forced to cancel around 10 foreign and domestic flights after hackers attacked its computers. Airline spokesman Adrian Kubicki said the hacker attack temporarily paralyzed LOT's computers at Warsaw's Frederic Chopin airport on Sunday, disrupting the processing of passengers for the flights.

  • WARSAW, June 20- Polish conservative opposition party Law and Justice on Saturday named deputy leader Beata Szydlo as its candidate for prime minister after this year's parliamentary election, which, according to opinion polls, the party is poised to win. The party's leader, Jaroslaw Kaczynski, announced he was stepping back from the role as would-be prime...

  • Greece to bring more to the table in talks: Minister Saturday, 20 Jun 2015 | 4:43 AM ET
    Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras walks with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker (left) ahead of a meeting at the EU Commission headquarters in Brussels, Belgium, June 3, 2015.

    Greece will try to bring more to the table in talks over its debt, a Greek minister said, as fears the country may leave the euro zone build.

  • DIARY- Emerging Markets Economic Events to July 3 Friday, 19 Jun 2015 | 8:02 PM ET

    JERUSALEM- Bank of Israel announces rate decision- 1300 GMT. BUDAPEST- Central Bank of Hungary holds rate-setting meeting. PARIS- Launch of the OECD business and finance outlook.

  • Euro zone finance minister said on Thursday they had nothing new to discuss on Greece, but they will meet again on Monday afternoon to prepare for an evening summit of the bloc's political leaders. In the past week, the debt markets of Italy, Spain and Portugal, which are at the mercy of Greece- related headlines, suffered one of the most serious episodes of contagion...

  • ST. PETERSBURG, Russia— Russian president's spokesman: loan to Greece not discussed during talks with Greek leader.

  • ST PETERSBURG, Russia, June 19- President Vladimir Putin boasted on Friday that Russia had found the "inner strength" to prevent sanctions causing a deep economic crisis, and told the West to stop using "the language of ultimatums." Investment in Russia has slowed to a trickle, capital flight has risen and the economy has been sliding into recession since oil prices...

  • Ukraine is negotiating with foreign bondholders to restructure $23 billion worth of debt, but talks have soured over a disagreement on the necessity of a writedown on the principal of the bonds. Yaresko warned at a press conference in Kiev that Ukraine would halt debt payments if the bondholders did not agree to a "last chance" offer in further talks.

  • ATHENS/ LUXEMBOURG, June 19- The European Central Bank expanded emergency funding for Greek banks as savers pulled out 1.2 billion euros in a single day on Friday, bankers said, but Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras insisted the nation's future in the euro was secure. With the country edging closer to default at the end of this month, the leftist leader assured Greeks...