Phil Bennett, the first vice president of the European Bank of Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), traveled to Kyrgyzstan for a three-day visit on Sunday to meet with Prime Minister Djoomart Otorbaev and other officials.
Bennett sat down with Tolkunbek Abdygulov, the governor of Kyrgyzstan's central bank, and leading government ministers to discuss the EBRD's strategy for the Kyrgyz Republic. He also met the mayor of Bishkek and the heads of municipal companies, representatives of the business community and staff of the international financial institutions active in Kyrgyzstan.
During his stay, Bennett visited several enterprises that have benefited from EBRD financing and support, including furniture maker Lina, beverage producer Bear Beer, clothing factory Aselina and the City Hotel.
The EBRD delegation included Masaru Honma, the director for Central Asia; Larisa Manastirli, the head of the Bishkek office; Mahir Babayev, the senior political counselor; and lead regional economist Agris Preimanis.
The two sides discussed fostering sustainable growth by strengthening regional links; bolstering the competitiveness of small- and medium-sized enterprises; promoting the sustainability of public utilities through commercialization and private sector participation; and reducing regional and social inequalities.
Since it began operating in Kyrgyzstan, the EBRD has invested nearly $637 million in the country's economy through 112 projects across a wide range of sectors and industries.
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