EBRD shareholders approve Lebanon’s membership

By Nibal Zgheib

Lebanon becomes an EBRD shareholder

The shareholders of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) have approved a request by Lebanon to become a shareholder of the Bank with a view to becoming a recipient of EBRD investments at a later stage.

The Governors are the highest authority representing the EBRD’s existing 66 shareholders, which currently comprise 64 countries as well as the European Union and the European Investment Bank.

Lebanon sought membership of the EBRD in July 2015. In their letter of application, the Lebanese authorities said the Bank’s support would play an important role in developing sustainable economic growth in the country by strengthening key sectors of the economy and contributing to reforms.

Responding to a call by the international community, in 2012 the EBRD extended the remit of its activities to the southern and eastern Mediterranean region (SEMED), initially investing in four countries: Egypt, Jordan, Morocco and Tunisia.

To date, the Bank has invested more than €3 billion in 83 projects across the SEMED region in natural resources, financial institutions, agribusiness, manufacturing and services as well as infrastructure projects such as power, municipal water and wastewater and upgrading transport services.

The EBRD was established in 1991 after the fall of the Berlin Wall and its goal is to support market economies and promote the private sector.