Balkan Developments

Kyriakos Mitsotakis swears in as Premier of Greece

Photo: EPA/BGNESThe leader of New Democracy Kyriakos Mitsotakis swore in as a Premier of Greece after the early Parliamentary elections held in this country on Sunday. The centre-right New Democracy defeated the ruling SYRIZA party. It earned nearly 40% of the votes and secured a full majority at the next Greek Parliament. In his first speech after the announcement of the election results Mitsotakis promised to work hard, in order to meet the expectations of the voters. SYRIZA earned nearly 32% of the votes and becomes the biggest opposition party.

Croatia submits application to join Eurozone’s waiting room

Photo: ReutersCroatia officially submitted an application to join the European Exchange Rate mechanism ERM2, also known as the Eurozone’s waiting room. Zagreb hopes to join the ERM2 mechanism at the middle of 2020 and adopt the Euro three years later. Croatia supported its candidature with a plan for reforms which have to be made before its accession to the ERM2. The Croatian authorities also point out that macroeconomic imbalances were reduced significantly.

Egypt makes step forward towards building gas pipeline with Cyprus

Photo: phys.orgThe President of Egypt Abdel Fattah El-Sisi has approved an agreement for construction of direct gas pipeline between Egypt and Cyprus. The agreement for construction of the first marine pipeline transporting natural gas from Cyprus to Egypt, and then re-exported to Europe, was signed between the governments of the two countries on September 19, 2018. The purpose of the document is to guarantee security of gas supplies and avoid double taxation in natural gas trade. Gas discoveries in the Eastern Mediterranean resulted in cohesion between Egypt, Greece, Cyprus and Israel in this field, but caused tension between these countries and Turkey.

UNESCO gives North Macedonia February deadline to demolish over 1,000 illegal buildings in Ohrid

Photo: EPA/BGNESNorth Macedonia’s town of Ohrid received an opportunity to avoid being reclassified a “world heritage site in danger”. Until February 1, 2020 Ohrid, which has been part of the UNESCO list of natural and cultural heritage since 1979 and respectively 1980, should fulfill 19 recommendations. The first step the Ohrid authorities should make is to demolish over 1,000 illegal buildings. Some of them were built along the shore of Ohrid Lake. The local authorities should also declare a moratorium on construction works near the Ohrid Lake. UNESCO is expected to consider the Ohrid case at the next sitting in June 2020.

Turkey ranks seventh in the list of best countries to live and work

Photo: EPA/BGNESTurkey places seventh in a ranking of countries best for living and working, data of Expat Explorer survey ordered by HSBC bank show. Over 18,000 people from 163 countries took part at the survey held for the 12th consecutive year. The survey studies the following parameters: opportunity to learn new skills, balance between work and private life, ets. The list is topped by Switzerland, Singapore, Canada, Spain, New Zealand and Australia.

Over 60,000 tourists visit Exit music festival in Serbia

Photo: exitfest.orgThis year’s edition of Exit music festival in Novi Sad (Serbia) gathered 60,000 tourists from 90 countries. The festival opened on July 4 and will continue until July 9. Nearly 100 bands from all parts of the globe will perform on over 40 stages during the four festival days.

Written by: Miglena Ivanova

English version: Kostadin Atanasov

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