EBRD President to visit Turkey

By Olga Rosca

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EBRD President to visit Turkey

Three-day trip underscores Bank’s strong commitment to the country

Sir Suma Chakrabarti, President of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), is paying a three-day visit to Turkey, the Bank’s top investment destination, from 16 to 18 February.

Sir Suma will travel to Gaziantep in the country’s south-east, one of the regions most affected by the refugee crisis, to assess better how the Bank can respond to the needs of refugee-hosting communities.

He will continue his visit in Ankara, where he will meet top Turkish officials, including Deputy Prime Minister Mehmet Şimşek and Turkey’s EBRD Governor, Undersecretary of Treasury Cavit  Dağdaş, to discuss the government’s reform agenda and how the EBRD can further support strengthening the country’s economy.

Finally, on 18 February in Istanbul, the President will address the FT-EBRD Central Asia Investment Forum alongside Deputy Prime Minister Şimşek. The event will bring together leading investors, policymakers, economists and experts in Central Asia, including Mongolia, to discuss the future of the region and the prospects for investment.

President Chakrabarti and Deputy Prime Minister Şimşek will hold a joint press briefing on Friday at 12.15 local time (media registration here).

Speaking ahead of his visit, Sir Suma said: “The EBRD is in Turkey to support the country with investment and policy dialogue as the country is facing external challenges and preparing major internal reforms to realise its long-term economic potential.

“At the same time, with its close cultural, transport and economic links to the Central Asian region, Turkey plays the role of a regional hub and we have chosen to bring investors and policy-makers to Istanbul to discuss practicalities of doing business in Central Asia.”

The EBRD is a leading investor in Turkey and currently operates from offices in Istanbul, Ankara and Gaziantep.

It focuses on investing in energy efficiency and renewable energy and supporting energy sector reforms; improving the quality of infrastructure with the participation of the private sector; increasing the competitiveness of Turkish corporates through innovation and improved corporate governance; deepening capital and local-currency markets; and promoting regional and youth inclusion, as well as gender equality, to support long-term growth potential.

To date, the Bank has invested over €7 billion in Turkey through 180 projects in infrastructure, energy, agribusiness, industry and finance. It has also mobilised about €16 billion for these ventures from other sources of financing.

In 2015, Turkey was the top destination for EBRD financing, with €1.9 billion invested that year alone.

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