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Open access

Edmond Çera and Arta Sinamati

Abstract

In many aspects, Albania as a transition country has several weaknesses when compared to its neighbor countries. Even though the collapse of the communist regime was reached at almost the same time with other Balkan countries, Albania still remains outside the European Union and has to face an immature government and problematic progress in several areas. Corruption is one of the most problematic issues in Albania. This research paper is based on the data collected by IDRA Research & Consulting and in the course of empirical analysis. It studies the relation between corruption and the microeconomic factors, categorized as demographic and socio-economic factors. In other words, this study aims to examine why some individuals are more willing to accept corruption than other. Based on prominent previous studies in this field, which were discussed to a relatively limited degree, this paper aims to build an empirical model for Albania that helps to explain why some individuals are more tolerant with regard to corruption. As previous studies have shown, such factors as gender, the area of living, region, experience or wrong conception are expected to be listed among the indicators that determine perception of corruption. This study takes into account the findings of literature review when setting up the regression. The results argue that factors such as the area of living, political orientation, the level of trust in institutions, personal experience with corruption, and the right conception of corruption are important factors determining the level of corruption perception.

Open access

Ankit Mishra and Linda Kauškale

Abstract

Sustainable development becomes a necessary practice in every country. Real estate has always been an essential need for humans to survive, almost all human activities are related to real estate. Due to that, as well as due to the growth of population, real estate has grown in numbers in the world for our basic need fulfilment. Major studies have shown that real estate objects are one of the major contributors negatively affecting our environment. Sustainable real estate development is a crucial practice implemented by successful countries and other countries are following them, adopting good practice in this field. Sustainable real estate development analysis not only helps to solve climate change issues, but also increases asset value. The aim of the research is to analyze two northern region capitals: Riga (Latvia) and Stockholm (Sweden) and their major steps being taken to promote sustainable real estate development. The comparative, historical, logical and statistical data analysis methods have been used in the research.

Open access

Laimdota Šnīdere, Ineta Geipele and Iveta Stāmure

Abstract

The majority of residents in Latvia live in standard multi-storey residential buildings, which were constructed between 1950 and 1992. At present, these buildings are obsolete; besides, in the course of construction process the durability and reliability levels were planned to be insufficient. In Riga, residents of standard multi-storey residential buildings do not support building renovation and are passive, despite the availability of the EU and government support as well as co-financing of building renovation projects. The majority of the respondents assume that the apartment is the most significant asset of the family. Moreover, 34 % - 69 % of the participants have renovated their apartment and save resources within their apartment boundaries. Only some respondents evaluate the technical condition of communal property, but most respondents do not have information concerning resource supply and energy accounting as well as are not interested in resource saving possibilities within the building in general, and do not understand the importance of technical maintenance of the building.

Open access

Jānis Viesturs, Armands Auziņš and Tatjana Štaube

Abstract

There is a wide range of factors - political, economic, legal, etc., which either limit or promote international real property transactions. It is considered that real property alienation to foreigners enhances foreign investment and economic development, however, some countries tend to limit such transactions. The current research provides a scientific view to reveal the reasons why certain countries impose different kinds of restrictions on international real property transactions. The objectives of this publication are: 1) to find out and analyse the existing arguments and reasons for limiting international real property transactions; 2) to determine the number and volume of international real property transactions in Latvia; 3) to identify the main argumentation for the current step and significant decline of international real property transactions in Latvia. Empirical analysis based on the review of scientific publications, statistical and comparative analysis of real property transactions are the main methods employed for this research.

Open access

Jānis Kleperis, Biruta Sloka, Justs Dimants, Ilze Dimanta and Jānis Kleperis

Abstract

The analysis of the results of long-term air quality monitoring in Riga is presented, which shows that in city centre throughout the measurement time (2004-2014) according to the guidelines defined by the European Union directives and Latvian laws the limits of small particles PM10 and nitrogen dioxide (NO2) are exceeded. From the nature of appearance of pollution and from the research of morphology and composition of fine dust particles it was concluded that in the city centre where the monitoring was performed the main air pollutants are caused by internal combustion engine vehicles. The measures to reduce air pollution performed by two Action Programs (2004-2009; 2011-2015) of the City Council showed that there were only two possible ways to improve air quality in urban environment ‒ to decrease the number of traffic units and/or to decrease exhaust emissions from vehicles.

From the analysis of energy consumption and resources used for it the conclusion was drawn that Latvia is dependent on fossil fuel import, especially in traffic sector (99 %). A new trend has been observed in Latvia ‒ the type of cars is changing: the number of gasoline cars rapidly decreases and number of diesel cars is growing. Both fuels in exhaust gases of second-hand cars are giving high emissions of fine particles (soot) and nitrogen oxides as compared with new cars; 72 % of cars on the roads of Latvia are more than 13 years old. The switch to bio-diesel can improve Latvian statistics according to CO2 reduction target for 2020 but not the concentration of PM10 and NO2 on streets with dense traffic.

Therefore, to improve air quality in urban environment and simultaneously reduce the dependence of Latvia from fossil fuel import, a scenario is proposed for the changeover to zero-carbon technologies in transport and energy production. Hydrogen is analyzed from the point of view of availability of resources and commercialized technologies. The research of the public opinion was done because there is little awareness in society about hydrogen as energy carrier and simultaneously as fuel.

Open access

Ivo Gulbis and Sanda Geipele

Abstract

With increasing global competitiveness, countries must have instruments to attract and keep businesses. One way involves attracting a core of foreign investors with the help of special economic zones (SEZs) and integrating them in local economy, causing industrial clustering. The aim of this research is to lay the groundwork for a comprehensive analysis of clustering potential in Latvia via its special economic zones. The empirical research relied on survey results conducted among 27 business associations with the combined member count of over one thousand businesses, operating in 12 broad fields. Initial results gathered from the 24 organizations that responded to the interview questions show that there is a very low degree of involvement in the SEZ by various social partners. This shows that something has gone awry in the way SEZ operate in Latvia and has led to a lot of missed opportunities from both sides.

Open access
Open access

Valery Komisarov, Linda Kauškale and Natalija Lepkova

Abstract

Presently the conditions for the commercial property development in Lithuania are favourable. The market indicators are demonstrating positive tendencies. Many international companies are entering the Lithuanian markets because of the supportive governmental instruments of competitive policy for these international companies. There is high demand for the commercial premises, and the respective governmental authorities are regularly improving the construction procedures. These are the factors, which are affecting the commercial property development activities in Lithuania. The aim of this paper is to highlight the factors, which are positively affecting the commercial property development in Lithuania. The key market indicators, supportive instruments for international companies and improvements of the construction procedures in Lithuania are reviewed by the authors, with prime focus on the capital of Lithuania − Vilnius. This paper is intended as guidance to the developers, who are entering the Lithuanian commercial property market.

Open access

Kaspars Kļaviņš and Elias Abu Al-Haija

Abstract

Islamic banking is one of the alternative financial models of the modern world, which is currently gaining more and more international recognition and reliability both in the East and West. The article reveals separate historical aspects of the genesis of Islamic banking in order to better demonstrate the potential of this financial system now and in the future. The purpose of the research is to highlight the ability of Islamic banking to integrate into the western-dominated economy and society.

Open access

Khaliun Ganbat, Inessa Popova and Ivan Potravnyy

Abstract

The article analyses impact investment of project financing. Companies’ own funds, own funds of the consortium members, the company’s own resources and budget funding, own funds of the company on the basis of a production sharing agreement, borrowed funds; the funds raised by the bond issue are all considered as the project financing sources in the natural resource field. The purpose of this article is to consider various opportunities to support environmentally oriented projects in the framework of project financing, including through attracting funds of banks for the development of “green” economy. The role of banks and the banking sector in supporting environmentally and socially oriented projects is analysed. The experience of banks in Asia, Europe and the United States in terms of “green” economy projects is shown. Moreover, environmental and social risks, and impact of a project, the project compliance with the norms and standards of responsible finance are all considered in this article.

Classification of environmental projects with the purpose of project financing is proposed, and also the scheme of interaction between stakeholders is shown, including banks, in the implementation of projects reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Furthermore, impact investment in financing projects with the participation of banking sector is analysed and justified on the example of such countries as Mongolia, Russia, Japan, the United States and others. Evaluation procedures and the selection of projects for social investment purposes are shown in the article, including the measures of supporting banks for the project implementation in the field of “green” economy. The following research methods are considered: systematic analysis, environmental economic analysis environmental auditing, statistical methods for evaluating the costs and benefits from implementing environmentally oriented projects, methods of assessment of damage from environmental pollution, etc.