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Investing in the Western Balkans

Date24 Feb

The EBRD organised a high-level regional forum on Investing in the West Balkans on Monday 24 February 2014. The event brought together prime ministers, government ministers, political decision-makers and leading entrepreneurs. 

Participants in the Prime Ministers’ session held under the Gymnich formula included Edi Rama, Prime Minister of Albania, Vjekoslav Bevanda, Chairman of the Council of Ministers of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Zoran Milanovic, Prime Minister of Croatia, Hashim Thaci, Prime Minister of Kosovo, Nikola Gruevski, Prime Minister of FYR Macedonia, Milo Djukanovic, Prime Minister of Montenegro and Ivica Dacic, Prime Minister of Serbia.

After opening remarks by the EBRD President Sir Suma Chakrabarti, the Rt Hon Kenneth Clarke MP, Minister without Portfolio in the UK Government, and the European Commissioner for Enlargement and Neighbourhood Policy Štefan Füle the four separate panels discussed regional projects and opportunities for investment in energy, transport, and corporates, as well as ways to improve the investment climate. 

The aim of the forum was to highlight potential investment and business opportunities in the region and promote the inflow of foreign direct investment and cross-border projects. The conference provided a unique opportunity for a far-reaching exchange of views to bridge the gap between political commitment and real regional projects.

You can follow the event on Twitter via #wbif.

Event Brochure (2MB - PDF)

Photos of the event on Flickr

Agenda, presentations and event materials

  • 24 February 2014

    8:00 Registration and refreshments

    Welcome address

    • Suma Chakrabarti, President, EBRD
    • Kenneth Clarke, Cabinet Office Minister, UK
    • Stefan Fule, European Commissioner for
    • Enlargement and Neighbourhood Policy
    • Konstantinos Bikas, Ambassador of Greece in London “Welcome Message on behalf of the EU Presidency”

    Prime ministers’ session*

    • Vjekoslav Bevanda
    • Ivica Dacic
    • Milo Djukanovic
    • Nikola Gruevski
    • Zoran Milanovic
    • Edi Rama
    • Hashim Thaci

    * held under the Gymnich formula

    10:40 Coffee break/prime ministers’ press conference

    Session 1: Investment climate
    Chair: Andras Simor, Vice President, Policy, EBRD

    Followed by a question and answer session

    12:30 Networking lunch

    Session 2: Energy diversification in the Western Balkans: The role of new sources and routes of supply
    Chair: Riccardo Puliti, Managing Director for Energy and Natural Resources, EBRD

    Followed by a question and answer session


    Session 3: Infrastructure in a tightening budget environment: The role of the private sector
    Chair: Thomas Maier, Managing Director for Infrastructure, EBRD

    • Marco Rosso, Business Development Director, Meridiam
      How can PPPs in transport be successful?
    • Thomas Hoefner, Managing Director, Infrastructure Development, Strabag
      Western Balkans: PPP experience and Strategic Outlook
    • Sinisa Hajdas Doncic, Minister of Maritime Affairs, Transport and Infrastructure
      The Croatian experience in private sector participation
    • Ensad Karic, Director of Autoceste FB&H, and
      Dusan Topic, Director of Autoputevi RS, Bosnia and Herzegovina
      Corridor Vc
    • Gerhard Schumann-Hitzler, Director for Regional Cooperation and Assistance, EC
      The use of innovative financial mechanisms to attract private capital

    Followed by a question and answer session

    15:00 Coffee break

    Session 4: Commercial integration in the region
    Chair: Claudio Viezzoli, Director for Western Balkans, EBRD

    • Emil Tedeschi, President and CEO, Atlantic Grupa (Croatia) and Bojan Radun, CEO, Nectar (Serbia)
      Do we still have appetite to buy?
    • Robert Knorr, Senior Partner at Mid Europa Partners
      What makes a private equity success story in the region?
    • Oliver Curri, CEO, Tulltorja (Kosovo)
      SMEs: surviving the crisis and growing
    • Goran Svilanovic, Secretary-General, RCC
      Strategy SEE 2020 (797KB - PDF)

    Followed by a question and answer session

    17:00 Closing remarks
    Jean-Marc Peterschmitt, Managing Director for Central and South-Eastern Europe, EBRD
    17:15 Networking drinks reception


    Event agenda (251KB - PDF)

    Case studies from the Western Balkans and Croatia (393KB - PDF)

    Factsheet on the Western Balkans and Croatia (1MB - PDF)


  • This event is now fully booked and registration is closed. 


    For further information, contact Beverley Eckhart at EBRDevents@ebrd.com.


  • European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)
    One Exchange Square
    London EC2A 2JN


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