EBRD notes progress in cooperation with Belarus

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) notes progress in the cooperation with Belarus, Paul-Henri Forestier, EBRD Regional Director for the Caucasus, Moldova and Belarus said as he met with Belarus’ Prime Minister Mikhail Myasnikovich on 31 January.

According to Paul-Henri Forestier, the EBRD Board of Directors adopted a new strategy of cooperation with Belarus in 2009. “It allows us cooperating with Belarus’ state sector, though there are some restrictions,” he said. He added that the adoption of the strategy helped achieve certain progress in the EBRD-Belarus relations. At the same time, Paul-Henri Forestier thinks that “the level of investments leaves much to be desired”.

Paul-Henri Forestier admitted Belarus’ active role in the creation of the EBRD. “I would like to thank you for it. You played a crucial role in the creation of the EBRD Office in Belarus in 1993-1994,” Paul-Henri Forestier said addressing Mikhail Myasnikovich.

Belarus joined the agreement establishing the EBRD in 1992, thus becoming one of its members. The country has 4,000 EBRD shares worth €40 million, or 0.2% of the bank’s authorized capital. Since 1992 Belarus has implemented a number of projects worth $175.1 million, such as opening a fruit and vegetable wholesale marketplace in Minsk, revamping Brest-Minsk-Russian border motorway, modernizing a CHP-plant in Orsha, developing Belarus’ telecommunications system and promoting small and medium-sized businesses.

Today’s EBRD-Belarus cooperation goes in line with the strategy for 2010-2012, which envisages cooperation in the promotion of small and medium-sized businesses, energy efficiency, trade liberalization, commercialization of the municipal infrastructure as well as the improvement of environmental protection standards and energy efficiency. In line with the strategy, the bank will operate mostly in the private sector.

Founded in 1991, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development supports the creation of a new private sector. Today EBRD investment instruments are used to build market economy in 30 countries – from Central Europe to Central Asia. The bank’s stock capital makes up €20 biilion.

According to www.belta.by