Publisher: Instytut Europy Środkowej
ISSN: 2657-6996
  • Beata Surmacz
  • Tomasz Stępniewski
  • Agnieszka Zajdel
  • Aleksandra Kuczyńska-Zonik
  • Jakub Olchowski
  • Konrad Pawłowski
  • Agata Tatarenko

IEŚ Commentaries

Baltic Team

IEŚ Commentaries 916
Bartosz Jóźwik - Baltic Team

Public Finance Sector Stability in Central European Countries (Part 1)

During deep recessions such as those triggered recently by the COVID-19 pandemic and the war between Russia and Ukraine, ensuring stability in the public finance sector is not an easy task. In EU countries, this stability is associated with maintaining budget deficits and public debt below the levels required by the Maastricht criteria. In 2022, many Central European countries...

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Baltic Team

IEŚ Commentaries 917
Michał Paszkowski - Baltic Team

Diesel supplies to the Western Balkan countries in the new international environment

For years, Russia has played an important role in supplying liquid fuels by sea to all of Europe, especially diesel fuel, a key product in the transportation industry. The Russian Federation’s armed attack on Ukraine in 2022 led to changes in commodity markets, affecting the volume of liquid fuel imports to the Western Balkan countries. Due to the new market conditions,...

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Baltic Team

IEŚ Commentaries 915
Michał Paszkowski - Baltic Team

Serbia activates natural gas supply efforts

Serbia has, for years, been dependent on natural gas supplies from the Russian Federation, and the resulting political influence has had consequences for its energy policy and the presence of Russian capital in key energy companies. In recent months, however, there has been a noticeable modification of the Belgrade government’s position on the importance of Russia in ensuring...

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Baltic Team

IEŚ Commentaries 902
Bartosz Jóźwik - Baltic Team

Economic growth slowdown and future prospects: an analysis of forecasts for Lithuania

Lithuania’s pursuit of geopolitical stabilization and the effective use of financial resources is crucial for its economic recovery. The European Commission’s forecasts for 2023 suggest a slowdown in economic growth due to persistent inflation. However, there are more optimistic prospects for 2024, which anticipate greater economic growth due to lower inflation, increased...

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Baltic Team

IEŚ Commentaries 887
Bartosz Jóźwik - Baltic Team

The path to stability: the future of Latvia in the context of economic forecasts for the years 2023-2024

Despite having to grapple with issues such as the effects of the war between Russia and Ukraine or – earlier – the COVID-19 pandemic, Latvia’s economy has demonstrated its ability to adapt and maintain growth dynamics. Notwithstanding the anticipated slowdown in export growth due to a decrease in foreign demand, the second half of 2023 is likely to see a significant...

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Eastern Team

IEŚ Commentaries 891
Jakub Olchowski - Eastern Team

Hybrid Counter-offensive

At the turn of May and June 2023, Ukraine launched a counter-offensive. Aware of the high stakes and high expectations, both from the public and from Western partners, the Ukrainian authorities are trying to tone down excessive optimism. At the same time, hybrid instruments were also used to increase the chances of a counter-offensive by destabilising and causing chaos in Russia....

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Baltic Team

IEŚ Commentaries 879
Michał Paszkowski - Baltic Team

Sweden’s electricity sector challenges

For years, Sweden’s low electricity prices have been a direct consequence of the operation of the country’s nuclear and hydroelectric power plants. A stable level of energy demand has made Sweden an energy exporter, but the situation may change over the next several years. Such a situation will require appropriate investment measures. Over the years, negative public attitudes...

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Baltic Team

IEŚ Commentaries 875
Damian Szacawa - Baltic Team

The Council of the Baltic Sea States: regional cooperation in Times of Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine.

The Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Baltic Sea Region (BSR) states, during their meeting in Wismar on June 1-2, 2023, concluded Germany’s one-year presidency of the Council of the Baltic Sea States (CBSS). The Presidency was driven by Russia’s aggression against Ukraine and the consequences of the Russian-Ukrainian war for the region. The ongoing discussion about the...

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Baltic Team

IEŚ Commentaries 878
Bartosz Jóźwik - Baltic Team

Estonia in the face of economic difficulties: an analysis of GDP decline and prospects for the future

The Estonian economy has been facing problems that have had a significant impact on its economic outlook. In 2022, Estonia’s real GDP decreased by 1.3% compared to the previous year. Forecasts which indicate that the downward trend might continue in 2023 are also concerning. Interestingly, despite the unfavourable economic situation, there is a decrease in the unemployment rate...

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Baltic Team

IEŚ Commentaries 871

Lithuanian-German military cooperation

Germany is an important partner of Lithuania in the field of security and defence. It also serves as Lithuania’s strategic ally both within NATO and the European Union. At the same time, Germany has made a significant contribution to regional security by investing in military infrastructure in Lithuania and supporting the modernisation of the Lithuanian army. Currently, the...

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Eastern Team

IEŚ Commentaries 863
Piotr Oleksy - Eastern Team

Strengthening the Community. Key themes from the meeting of European leaders in Moldova

The European Political Community (EPC) summit, held in Chisinau on June 1, 2023, was a step toward firmly rooting this format in the international system. At the same time, it was a clear gesture confirming the growing importance of the Eastern European countries. The meeting of European leaders outlined divergences on the issue of security guarantees for Ukraine. At the same...

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Eastern Team

IEŚ Commentaries 859
Hanna Bazhenova - Eastern Team

The Ramstein Group: Prerequisites for Creation and Role in Ensuring Ukraine’s Military Capabilities (Part 1)

Russia’s aggression against Ukraine on 24 February 2022 caused radical changes in the architecture of European and global security. The largest land war in Europe since World War II contributed to the creation of a coalition of 54 states – the so-called Ramstein format – which developed a mechanism for regular military assistance to Ukraine in the form of arms supplies,...

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Baltic Team

IEŚ Commentaries 852
Damian Szacawa - Baltic Team

Pragmatic Idealism: A New Strategy for Danish Foreign and Security Policy

On May 16, 2023, the Danish Minister of Foreign Affairs, Lars Løkke Rasmussen, presented a new strategy for foreign and security policy based on three priorities: enhancing security, creating global partnerships, and building a resilient society. All these goals are part of the continuation of efforts to support Ukraine and the international political and economic isolation of...

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Baltic Team, Visegrad Team

IES Commentaries 846
Marlena Gołębiowska | Łukasz Lewkowicz - Baltic Team, Visegrad Team

Preparations for the Three Seas Initiative Bucharest summit: 3SI countries in response to Russian aggression in Ukraine

On September 6-7, 2023, Romania will host a summit of the Three Seas Initiative (3SI) which, for the second time, will be against the background of the ongoing Russo-Ukrainian war. Despite settling relations between 3SI and Ukraine during last year’s summit in Riga, 3SI countries do not present a unified stance towards Russian aggression. Hungary has exhibited the most...

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Eastern Team

IEŚ Commentaries 845
Jakub Olchowski - Eastern Team

Special Patriotic War

Victory Day celebrated on 9 May is still the most important holiday in Russia, and at the same time an important instrument of the Kremlin’s policy, both internally and internationally. The Moscow celebrations in 2023 and Vladimir Putin’s speech showed that Russia is in a very difficult military and economic situation. Despite this, Russia’s ruling elites intend to...

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Baltic Team

IEŚ Commentaries 842
Damian Szacawa - Baltic Team

Green Alliance between the European Union and Norway

On 24 April 2023, in Brussels, the European Union and Norway signed an agreement on creating a so-called Green Alliance, aimed at strengthening joint climate and environmental action and greater cooperation in clean energy and energy transition. The agreement reflects an intensification of the existing cooperation between the parties in this field, which accelerated after Russia...

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Eastern Team

IEŚ Commentaries 838
Andrzej Szabaciuk - Eastern Team

Ukraine and China in the Face of the Russian Invasion

Since the outbreak of the war, Ukraine has been seeking greater involvement from China in resolving the conflict, hoping that this will stop Russian aggression. However, the Chinese government avoided direct contact with President Zelensky and spoke ambiguously about the causes of the war and Russia’s actions. Taking advantage of the situation, they are buying cheap Russian...

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Baltic Team

IEŚ Commentaries 829
Michał Paszkowski - Baltic Team

Croatia plans to build a regional gas hub

Croatia is taking active steps to increase its participation in ensuring the energy security of Central European countries. A key tool will be the expansion of the LNG terminal on Krk Island, which is expected to eventually supply natural gas to many countries in the region from alternative sources to Russia. Expansion of the terminal and natural gas pipelines is extremely...

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Eastern Team

IEŚ Commentaries 834
Jakub Olchowski - Eastern Team

The impact of the war on the dynamics of the political and social situation in Ukraine

Russian aggression affected the balance of political forces in Ukraine. Pro-Russian groups disappeared from the scene. Also, as long as the war continues, there will be no elections, perpetuating the current situation. At the same time, political conflicts and existing problems such as corruption and inefficiency of political elites are being revived. However, the morale of...

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Eastern Team

IEŚ Commentaries 832
Piotr Oleksy - Eastern Team

Ukraine and Moldova: toward a viable partnership

The Russian invasion highlighted the importance of Ukrainian-Moldovan relations for the development and strategic situation of both countries. For Chisinau, Ukraine has become a key security guarantor. In turn, Kiev recognized the strategic importance of its neighbor in the military, social, transportation, and logistics spheres. At the same time, there have been signs of...

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Baltic Team

IEŚ Commentaries 808
Michał Paszkowski - Baltic Team

Bulgaria considers returning to construction of Burgas-Alexandroupoli pipeline

Bulgaria is considering a return to the construction of the Burgas-Alexandroupoli pipeline, which would allow greater diversification of crude oil supplies to the Burgas refinery. The project was initiated as early as 1993, at which time it was intended to increase exports of Russian crude oil to international markets. The ongoing Russian-Ukrainian war and sanctions imposed on the...

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Balkan Team, Baltic Team, Visegrad Team

IEŚ Commentaries 807
Jan Muś | Michał Paszkowski | Dominik Héjj - Balkan Team, Baltic Team, Visegrad Team

Serbia-Hungary pipeline: a new chapter in energy cooperation

Serbia has been taking active steps for several months to diversify the sources and directions of crude oil supplies to the country’s only operating refinery in Panchevo. Due to sanctions imposed on Russia, the plant is currently unable to import crude oil from that country. However, the government in Belgrade is in favor of building a pipeline linking Serbia and...

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Baltic Team

IEŚ Commentaries 786
Damian Szacawa - Baltic Team

Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine: long-term implications for the Arctic

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has also brought a number of consequences for regions away from the conflict. One such area is the Arctic, which includes, among others, the northern part of the Nordic states. Within the Arctic Council (AC), political cooperation with Russia has been temporarily put on hold, while part of the work of the Council is expected to resume once Norway...

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Baltic Team

Komentarze IEŚ 753
Michał Paszkowski - Baltic Team

Kazakhstan: questionable source of crude oil supply for Central European refineries

The entry into force on December 5, 2022 of European Union sanctions against Russia, which prevent the import of crude oil from that country by sea, has forced refiners in Europe, including those in Central Europe, to seek alternative grades, including from Kazakhstan. On one hand refineries in Germany are counting on crude oil supplies from that country, but the direction of...

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Eastern Team

IEŚ Commentaries 731
Jakub Olchowski - Eastern Team

The Black Sea grain game

The agreement enabling the export of Ukrainian grain from Black Sea ports contributes to reducing the food deficit. This issue is also an element of the political game around the growing importance of the Black Sea, in which the beneficiaries are all parties, i.e. Ukraine, Russia, Turkey and the UN. The international position of Turkey, which plays an increasingly important role...

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