23 Jan 2023 16:57

EBRD invested 1.7 bln euros in projects in Ukraine in 2022 - president

MOSCOW. Jan 23 (Interfax) - The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) increased the amount of investments in projects in Ukraine to 1.7 billion euros in 2022, compared to about 1 billion euros it annually invested before, EBRD President Odile Renaud-Basso said.

The EBRD is staying away from military aspects of the situation, but it can help in economic efforts, and therefore, since the very start of the crisis, the EBRD has been extremely interested in looking for ways to continue supporting and financing projects in Ukraine, Ukrainian media referred to Renaud-Basso as saying at a conference at Ukraine House on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Switzerland's Davos.

She reaffirmed the EBRD's plans to invest 3 billion euros in Ukraine in 2022-2023.

The bank has managed to share risks in Ukrainian projects equally with donors, she said.

The EBRD is focused in key infrastructure and supporting liquidity in the private sector, which has lost access to international capital markets because of the crisis, she said.

The EBRD remains determined and expects to be able to pay an important and key role in Ukraine's reconstruction, Renaud-Basso said.

Repairs of the damaged infrastructure will be a top priority, and yet it is also important to put into practice plans voiced by the Ukrainian government to take advantage of the reconstruction to transform the country, she said.

In particular, as concerns the energy sector, these plans involve the development of renewable energy sources and closer ties with the European power system, in which foreign investors could be engaged, she said.

Investment in smart and green cities, their sustainability and energy efficiency, is yet another important avenue, Renaud-Basso said.

Asked about risk insurance in Ukraine, Renaud-Basso said the EBRD is already working through the Ukrainian banking sector to partially share risks facing financial institutions in financing Ukrainian companies, which helped provide 200 million euros to finance the national economy.

At the same time, the EBRD is also thinking about the development of new innovative products to cover political risks, which would be difficult to do in the current circumstances, taking into account high costs and problems with evaluation, but which will be essential at the reconstruction stage, Renaud-Basso said.

In any case, Ukraine needs support already now, as what is done now would mean saving on reconstruction later, Renaud-Basso said. The more Ukraine can be supported now, the less costly and less complicated the reconstruction will be, she said.