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EBRD First Vice President Bennett to visit Mongolia

By Nibal Zgheib

EBRD First Vice President Bennett to visit Mongolia

Phil Bennett will visit Ulaanbaatar to meet authorities and businesses

EBRD First Vice President Phil Bennett will visit Mongolia next week to meet President Khaltmaagiin Battulga, the interim government and the business community. It will be the first visit of a member of the Bank’s Executive Committee since the adoption of the new country strategy for Mongolia in June 2017.

During his three day-visit, which begins on Monday, Mr Bennett will meet the Mongolian authorities in the capital Ulaanbaatar. He will also visit the Oyu Tolgoi mining project and the local cashmere maker Gobi. Both companies are EBRD clients.

In Mongolia, Mr Bennett will be accompanied by Frans Weekers, EBRD Board Director Netherlands, Mongolia, FYR Macedonia, Armenia and China; and Irina Kravchenko, EBRD Head of Mongolia Office since April 2017.

The EBRD’s first step in Mongolia was the arrival of the Advice for Small Business team in 2001, five years ahead of banking operations. Since then the Bank has invested €1.4 billion in 86 projects in the country and has become the largest institutional investor in Mongolia. Most of the EBRD’s investments are in the private sector, and the Bank’s portfolio ranges from mining and microfinance to green energy.

With the Tsetsiii wind farm, signed in September 2016, the EBRD became a pioneer in renewables in Mongolia, a country characterised by extreme weather conditions and a rapidly growing demand for electricity. The wind farm will help supply Mongolia's power demand with clean, eco-efficient electricity by harnessing the country's vast and inexhaustible wind resources.

The new country strategy for Mongolia defines diversification, sustainable growth, responsible mining, private sector support and infrastructure development as the Bank’s priorities in the country. According to its latest forecast from May the EBRD expects Mongolia’s economy to grow by 2.8 per cent in 2018.

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