In this issue

While eastern and western Europe are in many ways more interconnected than ever, there are growing concerns about the potential limits to convergence in living standards between the two

Transition delayed

Despite economic gains across the region, many fear that integration has now slowed


Zenica. Arcelor Mittal. ©Matt Lutton
Can this inter-ethnic co-operation and foreign investment point the way to a brighter future?
Skoda car factory ©Kamil Rodinger
Inside Skoda’s state-of-the-art automobile plant
Connected Europe 2012 report

Positive territory

The region has come through strong headwinds to become a favourite with many investors

Independence movement

While optimism has been tempered, the potential of shale gas – not least the chance to reduce reliance on Russia – continues to drive exploration

Atelier Amaro owner Wojciech Amaro (right) at work in his kitchen

Food culture moves east

Communist-era stodge is off the menus as the region gains its fifth Michelin star eatery

New golden age

The post-communist boom unleashed a wave of private enterprise that has helped transform Poland

The city where east meets west

From banks to engineering and chemical companies, Vienna remains the hub for investors in the region

Baltic power plan meets resistance

A proposal for a new nuclear plant to provide electricity to the three former Soviet states has been beset by problems

Skoda's Mladá Boleslav plant

Drive on quality moves up a gear

Not only do the region’s carmakers outstrip many western rivals on cost but also on the finish and reliability of vehicles

Albania playing catch-up

Europe’s most isolated country is moving closer to the rest of the continent but more work remains

The bigger picture

Filmmaking is flourishing in southeast Europe, with the region also gaining popularity as a low-cost location shoot

Self-help required

As well as stimulating progress, the region’s close links with its western neighbours have also brought problems