EBRD Know How Academy surpasses 4,000 registered users
As part of its response to the coronavirus pandemic, the EBRD has developed an online learning tool that helps small businesses deal with the impact of the crisis. The Know How Academy is an online platform offering a free-to-use learning and advice programme for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises. After its launch in 30 economies and five languages, the platform recently surpassed 4,000 registered users.
The Bank organised a social media competition to promote the Know How Academy, which attracted a strong response. The five winners were announced in the Kyrgyz Republic, North Macedonia, Tajikistan, Turkey and Ukraine this week.
The initiative is funded by the European Union (including through its European Investment Advisory Hub), Kazakhstan and the EBRD’s Small Business Impact Fund (Italy, Japan, Korea, Luxembourg, Norway, Switzerland, Sweden, US, Taipei China).
Historic milestone at Chernobyl nuclear power plant
A monumental achievement was reached this week in the decommissioning of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant. The first waste canister of spent nuclear fuel was loaded into the Interim Storage Facilty 2 (ISF-2), a safe storage for at least 100 years. This addresses one of the most challenging and critical tasks in the transformation of Chernobyl into a safe and secure site. The ISF-2 project is funded by the international community through the EBRD-managed Nuclear Safety Account.
Flagship EBRD Green Cities doubles in size
Finance for the EBRD’s pioneering urban sustainability programme, EBRD Green Cities, is doubling in size with a further €950 million allocated to extend work over the next three years. The programme has already grown to include 43 cities and aims to expand to 100 by 2024, It addresses key environmental challenges for cities in the EBRD regions. The Georgian business daily The Financial reported on the extension of the programme.
Boosting North Macedonia’s EU accession drive
Offering crucial support at a critical moment, the EBRD signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the government of North Macedonia to boost the country’s EU accession drive. The cooperation will focus on strengthening private sector competitiveness and inclusive growth; sustainable infrastructure, the green economy and just transition, including regional connectivity priorities; and strengthening the investment climate and governance.
The news came at a moment of fresh disputes over North Macedonia’s EU drive. The MoU signing was widely reported by local media, including the news agency Makfaks.
EBRD launches US$ 1.5 billion 5-year global bond issue
The EBRD successfully launched a US$ 1.5 billion global bond, the third USD benchmark since the beginning of the year. The launch took place against the backdrop of positive global market sentiment following news about progress with Covid-19 vaccines and strong momentum in the primary markets.
EBRD readies supply-chain finance for Turkish businesses
The EBRD is preparing to deploy supply-chain finance to support Turkish businesses as the coronavirus pandemic continues to impact the country’s economy. Arvid Türkner, EBRD Managing Director for Turkey, informed a conference of local business leaders about the Bank’s offering in widely reported remarks.
EBRD signs up to improvement of road safety
The EBRD joined eight multilateral development banks in an appeal to improve road safety. Road accidents claim almost 1.25 million lives a year and are considered to be a rapidly growing public health hazard.
Meanwhile, EBRD president Odile Renaud-Basso discussed the issue in a bilateral meeting with Jean Todt, the head of the automobile federation FIA.
EBRD Managing Director Sustainable Infrastructure Nandita Parshad’s video message on LinkedIn stressed the importance of the Bank’s work on road safety across the EBRD regions.
Expanding listed SME support to the Baltic states
Working with Nadaq Baltic the EBRD is expanding its a small business research programme to the Baltic states. Nasdaq Baltic is the operator of the stock exchanges in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. The programme aims to provide SMEs better access to capital markets and was successfully launched in other EBRD countries earlier this year.
Ukraine’s postal service set for overhaul in rural areas with EBRD help
In Ukraine, a €63 million EBRD loan will finance the modernisation of the national postal service UkrPoshta’s logistics infrastructure and its operations. The news was widely covered by the media and social networks.
Following the landmark, Ukrposhta designed a series of special stamps to celebrate the EBRD team working on the project.
Kazakhstan forges ahead with renewable energy
The signing of a syndicated US$95.3 million deal to support the construction of the Zhanatas 100 MW wind farm marked a major milestone in the decarbonisation and diversification of Kazakhstan away from the country’s reliance on coal.
EBRD acquires stake in Egypt’s Adwia Pharmaceuticals
The EBRD is improving the availability and affordability of medicines in Egypt by committing to a US$250 million investment platform to acquire Adwia Pharmaceuticals. Co-investors are Development Partners International, a pan-African private equity firm, and CDC Group, a development finance institution funded by the UK government.
Improving telecomms services in Jordan
In Jordan, the EBRD and the EU are providing a financial package of up to US$ 5 million to telecommunications provider Al-Hadatha Telecom and Technology PSC to support the expansion of the company’s fibre-to-the-premises services.
New funds for Romania’s Agricover
In Romania, a €10 million EBRD loan will help the leading distributor of agricultural technologies Agricover SA to meet growing working capital needs.
Investing in wastewater network in Zadar, Croatia
In Croatia, the EBRD is providing a €4.5 million loan for the completion of construction and rehabilitation of a wastewater pipeline and collector network project in Zadar. The fifth-largest city in the country is a popular tourist destination on the Adriatic coast. The signing was widely reported by local and national media.
How a Bulgarian company painted its way out of the crisis
The Bulgarian company Escreo specialises in dry-erase paint that can transform any flat surface into a whiteboard. Under the EBRD Advice for Small Businesses programme, Escero was able to implement an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system – an IT system integrating processes across different parts of the business.
Supporting Syrian businesswoman’s ICT start-up in Turkey
Supporting Syrian-led enterprises in Turkey since 2016, the EBRD Refugee Response has provided training sessions, advisory services and mentoring and institutional capacity building projects to 3,300 small businesses to date.
Five questions you need to answer about your green bond strategy
The EBRD published a 5-question reference guide on green bonds. Green bond markets are increasingly the focal point of policymakers, investors and issuers looking to attract a deeper and more diversified investor base, while developing and communicating their green growth strategies.
EBRD in the news
Marking International Men’s Day on Thursday the EBRD Director of Research, Ralph de Haas, published an op-ed in the leading Dutch business daily Het Financieele Dagblad. His article presents new findings on the effects of masculinity norms on men’s health.
The Wall Street Journal examined the response by governments around the world in tackling the debts accrued in combatting the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic. The piece includes comments by EBRD Chief Economist Beata Javorcik.
Roger Kelly, EBRD Lead Economist for Turkey, commented for the Reuters news agency on Turkey's Central Bank’s ramping up its key interest rate by 475 basis points to 15%.
EBRD First Vice President Jürgen Rigterink started the #EBRDtree challenge to launch our 2020 Green Week. Plant your tree and share your photos across our social media channels #EBRDtree
EBRD Vice President Pierre Heilbronn delivered a keynote speech at a European Commission event on Just Transition and emphasised the Bank’s goals in this field.
EBRD Director Gender and Economic Inclusion Barbara Rambousek discussed how Covid-19 has affected women and equality in an event at Asia House which also covered the EBRD’s response to the crisis.
The EBRD joined the Cool Coalition, a United Nations initiative, to raise awareness of the need for sustainable cooling and help develop projects to accomplish this aim.
The EBRD and King’s College held a two-day conference exploring the recent trends in migration, with keynote speech from the LSE’s Alan Manning
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