Evening Briefing Europe: Bin Salman, Queen’s Speech, Rosneft

Here are today’s top stories for Europe.

The evening briefing will soon be available in your inbox every day. Sign up here.

Saudi King Salman appointed his 31-year-old son, Mohammed bin Salman, as crown prince and heir to the throne. The abrupt shake-up ousted his cousin and gives bin Salman, who already controlled defense, oil and economy portfolios, greater authority to try and reduce the kingdom’s reliance on oil. It caps two years of dramatic foreign and domestic policy shifts in the conservative Gulf nation— Andy Reinhardt

She wore a hat, not her crown. Marking the formal opening of Parliament, Queen Elizabeth II outlined the bills the House of Commons will consider in its two-year term. Brexit dominates the agenda, with the government planning eight new laws to ease Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union and quietly putting aside several manifesto pledges after recent poor election results. 

The world’s most expensive cities for expats. The Angolan capital of Luanda tops this year’s list, mainly due to the cost of goods and security. The annual survey by consultancy Mercer measures the cost of living in more than 400 cities, using New York as its point of comparison. Three European cities made the top 10, and they’re all in the same country. The cheapest place to live? Tunis, Tunisia.

Not much help required.  Two hours southwest of Vienna, the Austrian village of Donawitz has been an iron-smelting center for at least six centuries. In the early 20th century it was home to Europe’s largest mill. That tradition lives on, with a new plant opening this year. What’s less certain are the jobs: the new mill will need just 14 employees to make 500,000 tons of steel wire per year.

Igor Sechin, chief executive officer of Rosneft, center, at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum on June 2, 2017.

Photographer: Andrey Rudakov/Bloomberg

Billionaires, spies and oil men. Meet the board of Russian energy giant Rosneft. Its current directors are already well versed in political intrigue and bare-knuckle business practices. Now they’re about to be joined by a combative billionaire commodity trader and the representative of a Middle Eastern nation at the heart of a political storm.

Play nice, Britain. Buffeted by political chaos at home and abroad, the U.K. gas market must now operate without its biggest stabilizing force: the giant Rough gas storage facility under the North Sea. The planned permanent shutdown of the Centrica site means Britain is becoming even more reliant on imports of liquefied natural gas or pipeline fuel from Russia and Norway.

Supersonic jets and cars that fly. The bi-annual Paris Air Show is under way, with aviation giants Boeing and Airbus battling for aircraft sales in a less-than-ideal market. Low fuel prices and a lack of new plane models mean orders could be lighter than in previous years. The show is open to the public from June 23 to 25. Check out some of the more far out concepts on display.

An eagle design on the nose of an Embraer SA E195-E2 at the Paris Air Show.

Photographer: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

Compiled by Andy Reinhardt and Leila Taha