Government considering reducing fuel charges – Excise taxes not priority for IMF
The head of the mission of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to Serbia, James Roaf, believes that excise taxes should not be a priority and that the rising prices of fuel in the past year were a result of the rising prices of oil, not the increase of excise taxes. At a joint conference with representatives of the Government of Serbia and the National Bank of Serbia, Roaf said that, in the context of the growth of the economy, VAT and excise taxes were “good taxes” and that a reduction of the labor tax or parafiscal charges would have a much greater effect.
Arrival of Vinci will improve Serbia's image with investors
The French concern Vinci was recently awarded the concession for the management of the Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport, and Ambassador of France to Serbia Drederic Mondoloni says in his interview with eKapija that “this big investment for Vinci is an excellent example of the cooperation between our two countries”. Vinci Group is one of the world leaders in airport management. It is supposed to turn the Belgrade Airport into a regional hub capable of attracting many companies to invest in Serbia – Mondoloni explains and adds that “this investment will also contribute to the improvement of the country's image with potential investors”.
Turkish Cengiz Holding interested in RTB Bor
RTB Bor has attracted attention from Russian and Chinese investors, and for the first time, a Turkish company is interested – Cengiz Holding, owned by Mehmet Cengiz, a businessman and a good friend of Turkish President Tayyip Recep Erdogan. Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic confirmed that the Turkish investor was interested in RTB Bor while attending the commissioning of the Trans-Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline (TANAP) in Turkey.
Hungary eyes TurkStream gas deliveries via Bulgaria, Serbia
Hungary's foreign minister Peter Szijjarto said the country's government hopes to start imports of Russian natural gas through Bulgaria and Serbia via the TurkStream pipeline. Hungary hopes that Bulgaria will implement all the necessary investments to deliver the gas onwards to Serbia and then to Hungary and the European network, Szijjarto said after a meeting with Serbian energy minister Aleksandar Antic and Bulgarian energy minister Temenuzhka Petkova in Belgrade on Wednesday, as seen in a video posted on the website of Serbian news agency Tanjug.
Nasdaq posts record close as media and tech stocks jump on dealmaking, Europe markets close 1.4% higher as ECB plans 'dovish' end to QE
The Nasdaq composite jumped to an all-time high on Thursday as dealmaking activity lifted technology and media shares. The tech-heavy Nasdaq rose 0.9 percent to 7,761.04 with Facebook also reaching a record high. Netflix and Alphabet also contributed to the index's gains. The S&P 500 also closed higher, climbing 0.3 percent to 2,7872.49. The Dow Jones industrial average, meanwhile, slipped 25.89 points to close at 25,175.31 as a decline in bank stocks offset Disney's gains.
Shares of Twenty-First Century Fox rose 2.1 percent after NBC Universal-parent Comcast announced a bid to buy several major units of the media giant for $65 billion. Comcast's bid tops Disney's, which agreed to a $52.4 billion deal. Comcast shares rose 4.6 percent while Disney gained 1.3 percent.
Bank stocks fell after the European Central Bank said it would hold off on raising rates until next year, sending Treasury yields lower. The benchmark 10-year yield fell to trade at 2.94 percent.
European stocks rallied to close higher Thursday afternoon after the European Central Bank (ECB) provided the market with clues on the end of its massive bond-buying program. The pan-European Stoxx 600 pushed higher during afternoon deals to close 1.4 percent in the green, despite negative trade in the morning. All major bourses and business sectors were positive.
Volkswagen shares closed 2.2 percent to the upside, though they were negative earlier in the session after the German carmaker was fined 1 billion euros over its diesel emissions scandal. German prosecutors have said that VW sold over 10 million cars with a cheating software that understated diesel emissions. Volkswagen accepted the verdict, saying it won't appeal against it. This is one of the highest ever fines imposed by German authorities on a company.
Shares of Unilever slumped after warning its first-half sales will come in below its 3 to 5 percent full-year target. The Anglo-Dutch firm also said that it is "extremely unlikely" to remain listed in the FTSE after consolidating its headquarters in the Netherlands. Unilever's stock closed 2.8 percent lower.