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PM: Belarus hopes for greater cooperation, new projects with EBRD

Economy 13.09.2017 | 16:40

MINSK, 13 September (BelTA) - Belarus hopes to boost cooperation and implement new projects with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, Belarus Prime Minister Andrei Kobyakov said as he met with EBRD President Suma Chakrabarti, BelTA has learned.

“We are set to further develop the interaction with the EBRD. We would like the Bank to expand its operations in Belarus in new areas and formats and increase the funding for the ongoing projects,” Andrei Kobyakov.

Belarus has been working with EBRD for 25 years already. During this time, the EBRD has invested almost €1.9 billion in the most important areas. The EBRD has provided its assistance with the flagship projects that have become a sorts of hallmark for the Bank, including Stadler and Kronospan plants.

“The current financial indicators are optimistic and we look forward to further growth in the EBRD's operations in Belarus, which already this year, according to our estimates, could reach €200-250 million. Taking into account the strategy for 2016-2019, which removed a calibrated approach, the Bank's capabilities in our country have expanded greatly. We believe that we soon will show examples of our successful cooperation in the public sector and implement a series of iconic projects,” Andrei Kobyakov said.

Currently, work is underway on pre-privatization support of organizations of the financial and real economy sectors. “The most important project with OAO Belinvestbank, one of the largest state-owned banks, is in the active stage of implementation, and we hope for its successful completion within the expected time frame. We are grateful to the EBRD for the opportunity to attract funding for capitalization of OAO Belinvestbank. In the near future we plan to complete all necessary procedures and submit the project for the approval of the head of state,” Andrei Kobyakov said.

The prime minister also noted the assistance of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development in the preparation of OAO Krinitsa and Blakit for privatization. With regard to cooperation in housing and utilities, progress have been made on the projects in the water sector. Projects in the municipal waste treatment and energy efficiency are in the works.

In cooperation with the EBRD Belarus has been developsing the public-private partnership (pilot project for the reconstruction of M10 Highway). “We hope that with the help of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development we will be able to show a good example of implementing PPP projects in our country. We rely on the support and expertise of the Bank in this regard. In general, I would like to note that the development of the country's transit potential and transportation infrastructure is important to us, and we are grateful to the Bank for the help in this regard too,” the head of government said.

Belarus is ready to promote the cooperation with the EBRD and implement new projects in strategically important areas for the country. “We have established the relationship of trust with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and view the Bank as our reliable partner. On the part of the government I would like to assure you that we will make every effort to build upon the positive developments in the joint work and to achieve the goals and objectives we have set,” Andrei Kobyakov said.

Suma Chakrabarti welcomed the progress in the projects implemented in Belarus with the participation of the EBRD. “The changes that have taken place since my visit here in 2015 are precisely what we sought to achieve and agreed about in our previous meeting. We wanted to abandon old traditional approaches and start working with Belarus in a new mode,” the EBRD President noted.

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