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Europe Watch

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The shocking news last month was Russian President Vladimir Putin's invasion of the Crimean region of former Soviet state Ukraine in order to protect the large ethnically Russian population from an alleged rise in nationalist violence. This was followed by a swiftly held referendum on independence and Crimea being signed into the Russian Federation. From a European perspective, the current consensus is that while Putin may go further – into East Ukraine for example – he would be too risk averse to move into Estonia, another former Soviet state with a large Russian population, but one that happens to be both a European Union and NATO member.

Accordingly, the economic impact through direct trade links with the Ukraine remains modest, and the West has not imposed such widespread sanctions as to provoke Russia to cut off Europe's gas supplies. Of all the major economies, this would hit Germany hardest – which is why it's the only market where business confidence has taken a slight knock. We will monitor the situation closely.

Source : CBRE Global Investors

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