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While the authorities in Armenia have taken a number of positive steps to strengthen democratic institutions, further steps are necessary to create a robust democratic political environment, including reform of the police and the judiciary and the establishment of an open and pluralistic media environment.
Developing the financial sector and improving access to finance
The Bank will focus on providing its traditional SME and micro-finance lines targeting areas outside the capital city and facilitating access to credit for SMEs in the rural areas. In rural areas, the EBRD will launch agricultural credit lines in local currency and associated TC, in particular as the sector becomes more commercialised. The Bank, in cooperation with the IMF and World Bank, will engage in policy dialogue and provide TC to strengthen the central bank’s capacity to reduce inflation and dollarisation and develop local money and capital markets.
Improving municipal and urban transport infrastructure
The Bank will support enhanced private sector participation in the water and waste water sectors to support the introduction of cost-reflective tariff structures, improve service availability and reduce losses. EBRD will support through its investments urban and municipal transport reforms including the introduction of integrated transport management and ticketing systems, better parking management and regulation of feeder bus and minibus services. Intensive policy dialogue will be required to support reforms at the central and local levels. To address affordability and debt capacity constraints, a high level of grant co-financing will be required along with gradual tariff increases toward cost recovery.
Developing agribusiness and high value-added, export-oriented industrial companies
EBRD will help to address challenges in the industrial sectors through support for improvements to the business environment, strengthening corporate governance and increasing access to finance for local micro, small and medium sized enterprises (MSMEs). The Bank will identify investments in industries with export potential, including in areas highlighted by the authorities’ recent programme of export promotion. EBRD will aim to support the agricultural sector by targeting investments along the whole value chain. Where possible, the Bank will aim to utilise local currency financing. The Bank will also enhance activities to support MSMEs in key sectors through provision of advisory services.
Improving the regulatory and institutional framework for sustainable energy and increasing value-added in the mining sector
The Bank will support investments in financially viable renewable energy projects and, through partner banks, continue to finance energy efficiency credit lines for industrial and residential users. The Bank will support power generation, particularly new entrants and non-state participants, and will consider participating in regional electricity infrastructure projects that strengthen competition in the regional electricity market. The Bank will support bankable mining operations with reputable investors who demonstrate high standards of environmental and social protection.
Last updated 21 June 2012