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EBRD President to visit Romania

By Vanora Bennett

Citește în română

  • EBRD President to visit Romania this week for bilateral talks with government, business
  • Odile Renaud-Basso will address the Summit of Three Seas Initiative on EBRD work with Ukraine and region
  • EBRD has done €10.5 billion of business in Romania, a top-six investment destination

Odile Renaud-Basso, President of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), pays a two-day visit to Romania this week to hold talks with government and business leaders and to address the Summit of the Three Seas Initiative 2023 taking place in Bucharest on Wednesday.

President Renaud-Basso will also welcome the new EBRD Director for Romania, Victoria Zinchuk. Ms Zinchuk follows Mark Davis, who has held the role of Regional Director, Romania and Bulgaria, since 2019, and moves to Zagreb to take up the role of Regional Director, Central Europe.

In 2022, green economy investments made up more than 61 per cent of the year’s total EBRD investment in Romania, which at €709 million was the second highest level ever in the country.

This is Ms Renaud-Basso’s first visit to Romania as EBRD President. It will take place a few months after Marcel Ciolacu, leader of the Social Democratic Party, became Prime Minister of the country’s coalition government in June.

Since then, Romania has announced a major advance in renewable energy provision, preparing for the launch of its first auction for a contract-for-difference (CfD) support scheme for renewable energy, supported by the EBRD. Onshore wind and solar projects with a total capacity of 2000 MW will be supported through a CfD scheme for 15 years, with successful bidders expected to be announced in November.

“Developing renewable energy is a priority for EBRD’s investments in Romania. I warmly welcome these auctions as a support mechanism for renewable investments,” said the EBRD President. “The EBRD stands ready to support more such advances to help Romania reach its sustainability – and other - targets within the EU Recovery and Resilience Facility.”

As well as bilateral meetings with President Klaus Johannis and Prime Minister Marcel Ciolacu, President Renaud-Basso is meeting officials including Marcel-Ioan Boloș, Minister of Finance; Sebastian Burduja, Minister of Energy; Sorin Grindeanu, Minister of Transport and Infrastructure and Mugur Isarescu, Governor of the National Bank of Romania.

She will also hold talks with investors and the business community as well as civil society.

On Wednesday, Ms Renaud-Basso will also address the 2023 Summit of the Three Seas Initiative, a forum of 12 states in the European Union that lie between the Baltic, Adriatic and Black Seas in central and eastern Europe and meet to discuss increasing integration. Since February 2022, one key question has been the impact of Russia’s war on Ukraine on the wider region.

The EBRD has been at the forefront of efforts to support the economies of Ukraine and its neighbours in wartime. The Bank has committed to invest at least €3 billion in Ukraine by the end of 2023 – of which €2.5 billion has already been deployed - and has enhanced investments in neighbouring countries affected by the war.

Romania is a key partner of the EBRD and one of its top six investment destinations. To date, the EBRD has done €10.5 billion of business through 515 projects in Romania, focussing on financing infrastructure, especially in the regions, boosting private sector productivity and further developing the financial sector and capital markets. The private sector share of the portfolio is 80 per cent.

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