Big picture, little picture, FDI – Odessa & Ukraine


Some time ago an entry was published here that raised certain questions surrounding the “projects” and “project selection” machinery of Sasha Borovik and team, Governor Saakashvili’s “project manager” for the “Odessa project”. “Specifically concentrating upon those volunteers that end up with Sasha Borovik who looks after “projects” (are casinos and gambling projects for the Singaporean […]

Local elections result predictions – Odessa


Following on from yesterday’s entry and the numerous questions raised regarding prickly agendas and subsequent local election political fallout, extremely unfairly a reader emailed and asked for predictions regarding Odessa and the local elections – this before any candidates and party lists have been formalised.  Solidarity meets later today to select candidates and form lists, […]

Prickly agendas? – Odessa City Hall


Following along nicely from the previous entry, yesterday’s session of Odessa City Council – not to be confused with the Oblast Council – was canceled. The City Council session was canceled due to only 56 deputies registering in the session hall, when the minimum number required for a legal quorum is 61. An issue of […]

Time to peel away the recently applied Odessa veneer and get dirty once more

Black Hat media

Odessa has benefited from some rather rosy/and or glorifying headlines lately – the obvious increased tourism (due to the loss of Crimea), the new Patrol Police taking to the streets to (hopefully) change societal attitudes towards the rule of law, Governor Saakashvili doing numerous populist (and popular) PR stunts – and the first signs of […]

The new “Patrol Police” begin – Odessa

Patrol Police

On 25th August, perhaps fittingly, the first 392 officers of new “Patrol Police” take their oath and are subsequently unleashed upon the (diving) public of Odessa, at the statue of Armand Emmanuel Sophie Septimanie de Vignerot du Plessis – better known as the (5th) Duke Richelieu.  The remainder of the 800 Patrol Police officers do […]

Running the (prosecution) interference – Odessa


Saturday afternoon was spent by your author with a member of an EU Mission visiting Odessa.  The EU Mission in question relates directly to the rule of law. For once your author was not talking to a diplomat, bureaucrat or academic (enjoyable as that always is) – this EU Mission Member was a practitioner. The […]

A few first’s for Odessatalk – Podcasts and Balkanists (& Saakashvili)


A short entry doing the blog no favours by directing regular readers elsewhere following two”first’s”. The first is a debut with the Balkanist, where a few lines are published relating to the challenges facing Governor Saakashvili at the ports. The second “first” is an appearance on the ever interesting Power Vertical podcast –  Regular readers […]

Cargill to invest $130 million in Yushni Port (but there are questions)


A few days ago, your author bumped into the ever radiant Lily Lynch, owner of the Balkanist.  Rather flatteringly a request for a few (hopefully erudite) lines was subsequently requested for inclusion in the Balkanist in the near future  – albeit lines with little to do with the Balkans. Today, those few lines were written relating […]

Loaded dice? The return of (legal) gambling to Odessa

Red Roller

This entry has the potential to, and probably will, wander around the central theme of gambling and by extension events current in Odessa. By way of background, in June 2009 populist Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko championed the banning of gambling in Ukraine.  This, despite her rhetoric at the time regarding the moral corruption of Ukrainian […]

A gay weekend update – Odessa

Odessa City

A few days ago an entry was published relating to a proposed and yet somewhat mysterious premier of an Odessa LGBT festival – mysterious insofar as organisers and the knowledge of the event amongst the Odessa LGBT at the time of writing. Since then a little more has come to light – this being due […]