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Energy prices have been a salient issue in CEE for the past year. Part 1 of this article covered just how high the energy prices had climbed in Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Moldova, Montenegro, Poland, and Turkey, the impact of those prices on people, businesses, and governments, as well as the reasons why some countries fared better than others. Then Russia’s war against Ukraine changed everything, making a new energy pricing normal seem more distant than ever. In Part 2 we look at what energy experts believe could alleviate the situation and whether the war has impacted those plans.

In most countries, the energy consumption of buildings reaches very high levels, making their energy efficiency potential high. Buildings play an important role in energy efficiency and make a significant contribution to combating climate change and energy consumption. Therefore, it is important to align the process, from the buildings’ design to their final completion and exploitation, with the pertinent green standards.

In January 2022, the new Regulation (EU) 2021/2282 of the European Parliament and the Council of the European Union of 15 December 2021 on health technology assessment (the "HTA Regulation") entered into force on the territory of the European Union. The HTA Regulation aims to harmonize (but not to fully centralize) the currently fragmented procedure for assessing the health technologies of innovative medical therapies entering the European Union market in different European countries. The HTA Regulation shall begin to apply in stages from 12 January 2025 and the European Commission has already approved an implementation plan until that date, which includes mainly the establishment of the information resources needed for its operation, the creation of new supranational bodies to participate in the application of the Regulation and training of the competent national authorities.

In “The Corner Office” we ask Managing Partners at law firms across Central and Eastern Europe about their backgrounds, strategies, and responsibilities. The question this time: Who was your favorite professor in university and why?

US-based and other multinational employers with subsidiaries in Bulgaria often include their Bulgarian employees in their equity plans and grant them equity awards. Implementing an international equity plan in Bulgaria for the first time can be challenging for any multinational employer, as they should ensure compliance with Bulgarian laws and regulations. Tax compliance could raise particular concerns, as Bulgarian tax law is silent on many issues and the views of the Bulgarian tax authorities lack consistency throughout the years.

In the past twelve months, energy prices seem to have taken a life of their own. Their continued and, at times, shocking growth has raised concerns across the region and prompted differing responses and policy changes in each country. To get a more accurate picture of recent developments, we reached out to experts in Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Moldova, Montenegro, Poland, and Turkey and asked them about the current energy prices, their impact on local economies, the drivers behind their growth, and whether any plans were in place to address the issue.

CEE Legal Matters readers will likely be familiar with Patricia Gannon as one of the founders of Karanovic & Partners. Since her withdrawal from the firm (reported by CEE Legal Matters on September 21, 2020), Gannon ran her own "holistic strategic advisory business" (as reported on October 12, 2020) and, recently, she announced she is working on a new social media app for lawyers – Platforum 9. We caught up with her to learn more about her new project.

Bulgaria Knowledge Partner

Schoenherr is a leading full-service law firm providing local and international companies stellar advice that is straight to the point. With 15 offices and 4 country desks Schoenherr has a firm footprint in Central and Eastern Europe. Our lawyers are recognised leaders in their specialised areas and have a track record of getting deals done with a can-do, solution-oriented approach. Quality, flexibility, innovation and practical problem-solving in complex commercial mandates are at the core of our philosophy.

Firm's website: www.schoenherr.eu

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