EBRD says invested 23 bln euro in Russian economy over past 20 years

LONDON. February 5. KAZINFORM European Bank for Reconstruction and Development /EBRD/ has invested over 23 bln euro in the Russian economy over the past twenty years, EBRD's Managing Director for Russia, Natasha Khanjenkova, told a news conference here Monday, Kazinform refers to Itar-Tass.

She indicated that the bank has assisted Russia in implementing more than 750 various projects since the start of cooperation.

According to Khanjenkova, the EBRD is one of the largest investors in the Russian economy today. Last year alone, it spent 2.6 bln euro for the effectuation of 67 projects in various sectors of the Russian economy.

Khannjenkova said that, all in all, Russia accounts to 30% of the EBRD's overall operations and this testifies to the importance the bank attaches to that country.

She indicated that the EBRD's strategy towards Russia at present aims to help the Russians diversify the national industries and to create a modernized economy based on innovations.

Khanjenkova recalled that the bank is going to target its medium-term participation at the projects, which aim to diversify and upgrade the Russian economy but this does not mean that it will ignore involvement in other sectors.

She underlined the EBRD's plans to continue selective involvement in the energy sector projects that are expected to raise the energy efficiency of the economy and to cut down the hazardous impact on the environment.

The EBRD, the stakes in which are held by the governments of 64 countries, the European Union and the European Investment Bank was set up in 1991 to render assistance to East-European nations and to former Soviet republics in a transition from the economy based on central planning to the market-oriented one.

At present, the bank is investing in dozens of countries in Central and Eastern Europe, Central Asia, as well as Southern and Eastern Mediterranean.

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