GeriGündem Turkey's proposal to become full member of EBRD approved
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Turkey's proposal to become full member of EBRD approved

European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) governors approved on Monday a proposal for a timetable to decide by October on Turkey’s inclusion in the bank's line-up of investment countries. Turkey's formal application was approved "in principle," however the final approval process will take place 2-3 months later, the Anatolian Agency reported. German Deputy Finance Minister Thomas Mirow was also named as the new president of the EBRD, the group announced at its annual meeting in Kiev.

Following the approval of full membership, Turkey will be included among the active members of the Bank and a new finance opportunity will emerge for the private sector.

The Bank is rapidly approaching an important decision about its future strategic direction, U.S. Treasury under-secretary for international affairs, David McCormick told on Sunday a meeting of EBRD governors.           

"We will work with other shareholders to give Turkey's application a serious and thorough review in the coming months," he was quoted as saying by AP.

EBRD plans to gradually shift its investment from Central Europe and give priority to investments in Turkey in the next period and is expected to announce Turkey as the main target of its enlargement strategy.

The Bank is also thought to assist Turkey's integration with the European Union (EU).

The Bank, within the framework of strategy for priority to Turkey, will call on foreign investors to invest in banking, tourism, SMSEs, media, infrastructure investments, energy, real estate, health and information communication technologies, as well as agriculture and food areas.

The possible inclusion of Turkey would mark the most significant change to the EBRDs line-up of investment countries since it left the Czech Republic at the end of last year.

By 2010, the institution was also expected to depart Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia and Slovenia -- seven countries that together with the Czech Republic joined the European Union in 2004. The EBRD leaves countries when they attract a sufficient level of private sector investment.

 

NEW PRESIDENT

The Board of Governors of the EBRD named Thomas Mirow of Germany as the Bank’s fifth president, replacing Jean Lemierre who is stepping down at the end of two four-year terms.

Mirow, 55, will take charge on July 3 amid a period of rapid change for the bank, which was created in 1991 to encourage former Soviet states to adopt market economies but is venturing further east and southeast.

Paris-born Mirow, who has German nationality, will succeed Frenchman Jean Lemierre, who will step down after eight years in charge of the bank.

The bank has pledged in Kiev to step up investments in agriculture as the world faces soaring food prices.

 

AUSTRALIA TO WITHDRAW BY 2010

Australia said on Monday that it would withdraw as a shareholder of the EBRD  in 2010 after judging that its work was nearing completion in the former Soviet bloc, AFP reported.

  

"The EBRD has achieved a great deal in its 17 years," said Peter Reith, EBRD director for Australia and New Zealand, at a meeting of the EBRDs board of governors.

 

"The transformation of central and eastern Europe is in part a testimony to efforts made by the bank to assist willing governments and businesses to create new opportunities and better institutions,” he said.

 

The EBRDs shareholders currently comprise 61 national governments, as well as the European Community and European Investment Bank.


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