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EBRD President Renaud-Basso to attend EU-Central Asia Economic Forum

By Anton Usov

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  • EBRD President Renaud-Basso to participate in EU-Central Asia Economic Forum
  • Meeting with European Commission Executive Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis
  • Commitment to support green economy, digitalisation and inclusive growth

The President of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), Odile Renaud-Basso, will participate in the EU-Central Asia Economic Forum in Bishkek, the capital of the Kyrgyz Republic, on 5 November 2021, demonstrating the Bank’s commitment to the region and its sustainable development.

The Forum will give high-level international and regional stakeholders an opportunity to discuss matters of primary importance to Central Asia, including regional economic resilience, prosperity and cooperation.

Arriving from the COP26 Climate Conference, the EBRD President is expected to use her opening address to emphasise the urgent need for a green transition and the Bank’s aim to support countries’ in their shift to low-carbon and net-zero economies. Though Central Asia is heavily dependent on fossil fuels, many countries are adopting ambitious climate targets. The EBRD is actively supporting them with policy engagement and financing to develop and implement their strategies.

Ms Renaud-Basso said: “I would like to confirm that the EBRD’s future activity in Central Asia will be aligned with our own target of making half of the Bank’s annual investment green by 2025 and compliant with the goals of the Paris Agreement by early 2023. We have the capital and experience to do this, and our partners in Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, Mongolia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan can testify that the EBRD is already delivering towards these objectives.”

The EBRD President is also expected to speak about the post-Covid-19 economic recovery in Central Asia, the need for better regional integration, digitalisation, inclusive development and improvement of business environment for both local and foreign investors. The concerted efforts of major international stakeholders, such as the European Union (EU) and the EBRD, can help the region’s economies, some of which are still badly affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, move towards a sustainable and green future with targeted financial assistance and policy engagement.

At the Forum, Ms Renaud-Basso will also meet with European Commission Executive Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis and senior representatives of the Central Asian states. It will be an opportunity to discuss the Bank’s policy reform agenda in Central Asia, which aims to promote stability and transparency in the business environment, support small and medium-sized enterprises and help attract greater foreign direct investment.

The EBRD has been working in Central Asia for 30 years and has since invested US$ 17.8 billion (€15.4 billion) in almost 930 projects. The institutional partnership between the Bank and the EU in the region, particularly through the EU Investment Facility for Central Asia (IFCA), has been instrumental in the success of many investments. It has helped to deliver focused assistance in the form of technical cooperation and co-investment grants, guarantees and other instruments. 

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