ASTANA – European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) President Suma Chakrabarti visited Tajikistan on Nov. 17-18, the first official visit by an EBRD president to that country in nine years, an EBRD press release announced on Nov. 17. Two agreements were signed during the visit, and Chakrabati met with high-level officials and addressed Tajikistan’s investment climate council.
Chakrabarti signed financing agreements with two companies during the visit, one with microfinance institution IMON International on providing funds to increase lending to small enterprises and another with Schiever Tajikistan, which plans to open the country’s first modern supermarket. The past year has been a record year for EBRD investment in Tajikistan, the bank reported, and a new EBRD strategy for the country is being developed.
The EBRD’s priorities in Tajikistan are supporting the private and financial sectors and infrastructure development. More than half of Tajikistan’s gross domestic product is estimated to come from remittances, the World Bank reported in its April 2014 Migration and Development Brief.
With President of Tajikistan Emomali Rahmon, Chakrabarti discussed the country’s growing private sector. He then addressed a special session of the Consultative Council on the Investment Climate under the President of Tajikistan, reviewing recent economic developments in Tajikistan, including the country’s improved ranking in the latest World Bank Doing Business report, investment reforms and Tajikistan’s activities as a member of the World Trade Organisation.
Chakrabarti also met with the ministers of finance, energy and foreign affairs; the governor and the deputy governor of the country’s national bank; representatives of the business, investor and diplomatic communities and international financial institutions, EBRD clients and civil society representatives, including women’s organisations.
The EBRD delegation was also to visit the Nurek hydropower plant, participate in an energy sector round-table discussion and meet with local authorities.
The EBRD has invested about 360 million euros in Tajikistan to date.