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Freiherr Bruck hopes for good relations

 

Minister of Foreign Affairs Freiherr von Bruck has today stated that he hopes for good relations with the Austrian neighbours, especially, as some parts of the citizenry are still unsure about the Austrian State. Bruck has stated that with the friendly responses that have been received, albeit none of them coming from neighbours, the Austrian state can hope for friendly and cooperative relations, if it conducts itself well.

 

To this end, Bruck has also commented on Prussian movements into Southern Germany. "While Prussia seems rather careful about handling our country, it would seem they do not treat us unnecessarily unfriendly. Still, the Austrian state would hope that Prussia is willing to work together, instead of shutting us out. The Ministry shall send a proper note to Prussia later today."

Edited by Evangeline Anovilis
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Government has great plans for Rijeka

 

Rijeka (or alternatively Fiume) in Croatia has long been an important adriatic port. However, investors across the monarchy will have high hopes for this town, which most likely will be main outlet of maritime trade of Austria. As the largest and best located port of the monarchy, Rijeka has already attracted some attention, however following today's announcement, investment might experience a new surge.

 

According to the Ministry of Economy, Rijeka is going to become the Empire's new Triest, and the Ministry is eager to promote the port by all means necessary. "Connecting the Empire to the world is going to boost our economy a great deal. Prosperity is waiting out there.", Johann Bachmann, Director of the Austrian Lloyd stated. The Ministry of Economy has declared Rijeka a free port of the monarchy, to attract investment, while plans are underway, to improve railway connections to Zagreb/Agram and from there both to Wien and Budapest, so as to allow easy access from the coast to the Interior. An idea to use this project for a railway from Zagreb to Sarajevo also has been discussed, but the decision on this project has yet to be made.

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Elections produce uneasy coalition

 

Following the first Reichsrat elections, it seems that the conservative forces have seized a majority. Provided, they manage to stick together. Around 56% of the ballot have went to conservative forces, such as the Austrian People's Party, the Czech Civic Democratic Party, the Slovak Civic Conservative Party, Hungarian Fidesz (with it's branch of the Szekely Christian Democrats), the Polish Conservative Party, the Croatian Democratic Union, the Croatian Democratic Union of Bosnia and Hercegovina, the Bosnian Party for Bosnia and Hercegovina and the Transylvanian Agrarians. Additionally, about 7 seats have went to Hungarian Jobbik, which however will most likely be in the opposition, due to both a nationalist Magyar stance and clashes with Jewish independent conservatives. Independent members, especially stemming from Southern Szekely and Voivodina, as well as Galicia, make up 21 seats of 514 seats overall. As is pretty obvious, it is still to be seen how the government will manage to unite these parties into one coalition, or whether there will be changing coalitions with parties outside the conservatives, to make up for matters. Because while the conservative forces look splintered, the Social Democratic parties look little different, though neither compare to nationalist forces, which thankfully are a small minority.

 

Her Imperial Majesty Josephine has appointed Johann Fürst zu Schwarzenberg as Prime Minister, a member of the great House of Schwarzenberg, which in the past has created quite a few notable politicians, such as Felix zu Schwarzenberg and Karel zu Schwarzenberg.

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Ministry of Economy draws up plans for unification

 

Despite the long periods in which parts of the Empire were united, frequent splits still have left their mark. While politically, unity seems to settle in, the Ministry of Economics has stated concerns about the still compartmentalised economy. "Every part of the monarchy has their own company for pretty much everything. While competition needs multiple suppliers, these companies hardly compete outside their region, in which some hold monopolies. We are hoping to change this, by easing the barriers to expansion across the Austrian lands.", Stjepan Vidović, Minister of Ecenomy explained in a public statement yesterday. Indeed, only a selected handful of sectors have structures that reach across the monarchy. Most notably banking institutes like Erste Bank and Raiffeisen, but also OMV (Österreichische Mineralölverwaltung) have had a formidable presence already prior to the establishment of the Empire.

 

One main point the ministry seeks to address are differring standards in the infrastructure. While the unification of nationalised railways into the k.k. Staatsbahnen (k.k.StB or KKStB) was largely successful, having only to account for very few exceptions and peculiarities, which mostly however already had to be dealt with by the predecessor Österreichische Bundesbahnen (ÖBB), other sectors had to deal with astonishingly large differences in infrastructure.

 

The issue however is not easy to deal with, as the Southern and Eastern regions, generally posessing less developed infrastructure and having had up to now less restrictive laws in place, fear, that if a unified standard comes into place, they will be overrun, just as happened with Austrian banking and petroleum companies. Minister Vidović, himself a Croat, states that such protectionism might hurt the customers in such regions, however, he most likely will have still a bit of worrk to do, to find support for the project.

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Ministerpräsident Schwarzenberg plans to attract foreign experts

 

The Ministerpräsident in a speech yesterday has announced that he will seek to strengthen the Austrian economy, not merely by strengthening the infrastructure and unity of the Danube monarchy, but also by attracting foreign knowledge and investment to develop domestic ressources of the Austrian Empire. According to reports published by the Ministry of Economy the Empire has no minor economic base, but lacks in economic sectors were instability and lack of economics of scale in pre-unification years caused considerable decline and stagnation.

 

To accomplish this objective, the Ministerpräsident hopes to establish austria as a more attractive location for foreign enterprises to operate, so as to attract investment and industrial enterprises providing Austria with both employment and a greater range of economic activities that had not yet developed on the Imperial market.

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