EBRD President Chakrabarti visits Taipei

By Olga Rosca

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EBRD President Sir Suma Chakrabarti is visiting Taipei on 18 and 19 March where he is meeting the President Ma Ying-jeou, Minister of Foreign Affairs David L. Y. Lin, President and CEO of the Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA) Peter W. J. Huang, and Chairman of the Export-Import Bank of the Republic of China (Eximbank) Robert Rueen-Fong Chu.
Further strengthening the growing EBRD-Taiwanese cooperation, President Chakrabarti will sign a Memorandum of Understanding with Eximbank. The document aims to boost cooperation between the two banks and explore opportunities to co-finance projects in regions where the EBRD invests.
The EBRD – established to help central and eastern Europe and countries of the former Soviet Union develop well-functioning market economies – now invests in more than 30 countries. Working together with the private sector, it invests in projects, engages in policy dialogue and provides technical advice to foster innovation and build sustainable and open-market economies.
Speaking ahead of the visit, President Chakrabarti said: “We are encouraged by local companies’ interest in working together with the EBRD and are pleased to see our cooperation deepen.”
Taiwanese businesses are an important source of foreign direct investment in countries where the EBRD works. The value of joint Taiwanese-EBRD investment stood at €1.33 billion as of January 2015. EBRD finance accounted for €1.1 billion and Taiwanese investment for €260 million.
In addition, its funding has provided vital support to the EBRD since the establishment of the latter in 1991. Grant-based assistance through the TaiwanBusiness-EBRD Cooperation Fund and various multi-donor accounts has benefited all countries where the EBRD works and now stands at some US$39 million.
This funding has helped more than 270 projects in sectors such as sustainable resource management, intelligent transportation systems and information technology, as well as the corporate sector, through funding for the EBRD Small Business Support (SBS) and Women in Business programmes.
In 2014 the Taiwanese authorities replenished the TaiwanBusiness-EBRD Technical Cooperation Fund with US$ 1.75 million and the Early Transition Countries Fund (to which it was a founding contributor) with US$ 250,000.
Also in 2014, they contributed US$ 671,500 to the Southern and Eastern Mediterranean Multi-Donor Account for technical cooperation activities in the region.
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