EBRD has invested billions in BiH, due to Russia and Belarus sanctions stance, that support is now on hold – Sarajevo Times

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has been involved for years in the development of our country. There are billions of BAMs since the end of the war.

The EBRD recently celebrated its 25th anniversary in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH). During this period, more than 2.83 billion euros have been invested in our country, distributed in 200 projects which have greatly contributed to the reconstruction and modernization of the country.

Last year alone, the EBRD provided more than €140 million for projects in Bosnia and Herzegovina, supporting infrastructure, the financial sector and real economy businesses, according to the Bank’s final results for This year. Entering 2022 with a series of projects, the EBRD is ready to increase its support for public infrastructure in Bosnia and Herzegovina, where major projects to improve public transport and water quality are ready to start as soon as the government has given the necessary approvals.

This bank’s first investment in BiH, after the end of the war in 1996, was to support the urgent reconstruction of the electricity and telecommunications network. Another initial objective of the EBRD was to restore stability in the banking sector. Then, in December 1996, the EBRD approved an investment in the capital of the Croatian bank of Mostar. Today, the EBRD is extending lines of credit to local banks to continue lending to small and medium-sized enterprises and households, and financing businesses and municipalities.

At the session two days ago, the presidency accepted amendments to the agreements with the EBRD on subsidies for the financing of the Poprikus sectionand – Nemila and the Ivan tunnel on the Vc corridor, as well as the agreement with the EBRD for water supply in Brcko, and a loan agreement with the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) for a modernization of water and sanitation. Amendments to the grant agreement with IBRD for the water and sanitation modernization project for Bosnia and Herzegovina and the agreement with the European Investment Bank (EIB) for the financing of the hospital in Republika Srpska (RS) were also accepted.

The EBRD said two days ago that it expects BiH’s economy to grow by 2.3% in 2022, revising earlier projections by 0.7 percentage points. BiH’s economic growth is expected to accelerate by 3% in 2023, according to the EBRD. For the Western Balkan region, the The EBRD forecasts economic growth of 3.2% in 2022, about 0.9 percentage point lower than previously forecast. The new forecasts are based on a series of assumptions about events in the coming months and therefore have a high degree of uncertainty.

However, we will not be receiving funds from the EBRD in the foreseeable future. Neither the Cabinet nor the State Parliament backed the EBRD resolution on taxation of sanctions against Russia and Belarus, a prerequisite for obtaining funds. So we are not excluded, but all is pending, and it may take some time.

At the end of the deadline, it was confirmed that Vjekoslav Bevanda spoke about the EBRD resolutions on imposing sanctions on Russia and Belarus. However, it is unclear how he voted. By supporting the resolution, our country could be spared possible economic consequences. If they were to happen, these would be many projects for which we are waiting for funds.

E.Dz.

Source: Federalna

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