EBRD President visits the Kyrgyz Republic

By Anthony Williams

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EBRD President Sir Suma Chakrabarti is visiting the Kyrgyz Republic on 7-8 November 2012, his first official trip to the country. During the visit he is meeting President Almazbek Atambayev, First Vice Prime Minister and EBRD Governor Djoomart Otorbaev, Minister of Finance Olga Lavrova and Bishkek Mayor Isa Omurkulov, as well as representatives of the diplomatic and donor community and international financial institutions, to discuss the economic situation and the strategic role of the EBRD in the country.

The visit highlights the Bank’s continued support for the Kyrgyz Republic. In the period 2009-11, when the Kyrgyz economy was affected by the global financial crisis and also by political tensions, the EBRD underscored its commitment with investments of US$ 270 million in 37 projects.

President Chakrabarti and the EBRD delegation, including Olivier Descamps, Managing Director for Turkey, Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia, Masaru Honma, Director for Central Asia and Senior Political Counsellor, Mahir Babayev, are also meeting key local banks and financial institutions for an overview of the sector and its regulatory background. In addition, the Agenda includes visits to some of the companies in which the EBRD has invested or is planning to invest.

During the President’s visit, the Bank will inaugurate the new premises of its Bishkek-based Resident Office. This week, the EBRD also plans to sign a local currency loan worth the equivalent of US$ 4 million to microfinance bank CJSC Bai-Tushum and Partners MFC. Via this loan, the sixth of its kind to Bai-Tushum, the EBRD expects to support a long-standing partner with a particularly strong record in reaching out to small entrepreneurs throughout the country.

Priorities for the Bank’s operations in the Kyrgyz Republic include helping the government promote reforms to improve the investment climate, strengthening the municipal and infrastructure services for smaller cities, supporting the development of private enterprises and local financial institutions and strengthening the financial sector via the Bank’s local currency lending initiative.

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