Every Monday Visegrad Insight releases a weekly update on key developments in Central Europe from the point of view of democratic security. Our team monitors for important political, civil society, economy and foreign policy updates and where possible hints at risks and developing scenarios. Currently, we monitor the situation in the following 10 countries:
- Baltics: Next week, the Baltic countries have collectively decided to impose sanctions on Belarusian authorities responsible for cracking down on protests.
- Belarus: There will be smaller demonstrations against the government throughout the week with the larger Sunday rally in Minsk.
- Bulgaria: Covid-19 restrictions will grow as school children will be required to wear masks. Bulgaria’s death total stands at 2820 but current projections estimate over 12,000 by March.
- Czechia: New green legislation threatens plans for nuclear power plant. A new tax law has been sent to the Senate, extending the amount of tax-free income, lower duty on oil but higher
- Hungary: Pressure from human rights watch to increase over anti-LGBTQI legislation as well as fall out from the collective veto for the EU budget. Potential changes to the electoral law could limit opposition parties ability to challenge the government. First samples of Russian and Chinese vaccines are due to arrive without the EMA’s approval and in violation of EU rules.
- Poland: Activists call for open consultation of new migration law which is being formulated behind closed doors. Threats of Polexit will be echoing back and forth throughout the week.
- Romania: Calls for reform of the health care system (see below).
- Slovakia: Expect a push for digitalisation to occur as the country stagnated in this area in 2020 especially if an EU budget is agreed.
Next week’s (pre-)Black Friday sales should see a much-needed boost to the economies of Central Europe. Online sales are expected to skyrocket due to lockdown restrictions, adversely affecting the already hard-hit brick and mortar stores.