2019-08-01 - Bulletin

Jakub Pieńkowski

Relations Between Bulgaria and the U.S.: Fields of Cooperation and Disagreement

Bulgaria views the United States as its main military ally and it is an important partner to the Americans in the fight against international terrorism. At the same time, energy cooperation between Bulgaria and Russia clashes with the U.S. desire to limit Russia’s influence and to gain the position of a major gas supplier to the Balkans. U.S. opposition is unlikely to halt Bulgarian plans to build an extension of the TurkStream gas pipeline, guaranteeing Russia further energy domination over the region.

2019-07-31 - Bulletin

Szymon Zaręba

Russia's Return to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe

Under pressure from Russia, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) has restored to the Russian delegation rights which had been limited under sanctions imposed after the annexation of Crimea. It did this despite the fact that, contrary to previous resolutions, Russia has neither withdrawn from Crimea nor ceased to destabilise eastern Ukraine. The PACE concession was opposed by delegations of some Central and Eastern European countries, including Poland. Close coordination of their activities may create an opportunity to limit Russian representatives’ other rights.

2019-07-30 - Bulletin

Anna Maria Dyner

Dilemmas in Russia's Policy Towards Iran

The common goal of Russia and Iran is to limit the role of the U.S. in the Middle East. At the same time, the Russian authorities are afraid to help Iran become too powerful, as this may threaten the Kremlin’s own position in the region. On the other hand, the growing conflict between Iran and the United States (along with the latter’s allies, including Arab states and Israel) may force Russia to choose a side and deprive it of the opportunity to act as a mediator in the Middle East.

2019-07-29 - Bulletin

Łukasz Ogrodnik

Czech Republic on the Challenges in Cooperation with China

Contrary to the pro-China stance of Czech President Miloš Zeman, the government of Andrej Babiš is withdrawing from tightening political relations with China. This is due to disappointment in economic cooperation, the sense of a cyberthreat, and intensification of relations with the U.S. It is in EU countries’ interest to support Union initiatives strengthening the common position towards China, such as the monitoring mechanism of foreign investment or implementation of recommendations by the European Commission (EC) regarding fifth-generation mobile technology (5G).

2019-07-26 - Bulletin

Veronika Jóźwiak

Hungarian-Russian Economic Relations

Hungarian-Russian economic relations are based on the energy industry. Hungary’s efforts to build closer political relations with Russia after 2010 did not result in a marked increase in bilateral trade, investment, or greater Russian influence outside the energy sector. EU economic sanctions imposed on Russia and the introduction of counter-sanctions in 2014 caused a significant drop in Hungarian exports to Russia. However, this has not resulted in substantial losses to the Hungarian economy.