EBRD chief thanks Taiwan on 1st visit
CNATAIPEI - The president of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) expressed his gratitude to Taiwan yesterday for its constant support since the bank's establishment in 1991 and said he looked forward to a closer partnership.
March 2, 2013, 12:02 am TWN
“We want to do much more with investors from Taiwan, and it's very important for me to lift this great relationship for 22 years to a new level,” said Sir Suma Chakrabarti, the bank's president, at a seminar titled “Building Central Asia with EBRD.”
Taiwan has been one of the most important donors to the bank, and the longstanding partnership could grow even stronger when more Taiwanese investors offer their expertise in energy efficiency, knowledge economies and transportation, Chakrabarti said.
The first people Chakrabarti met at the bank's office in London after assuming his position last July were members of a Taiwanese delegation, which is why he promised to visit Taiwan as soon as possible, he said.
On his three-day visit, his first to the country, Chakrabarti is scheduled to visit the traffic control center of Taipei's Mass Rapid Transit system and meet with President Ma Ying-jeou, Foreign Minister David Lin and Central Bank Deputy Governor Yang Chin-lung.
The EBRD chief has also been invited to introduce Taiwanese companies to opportunities available through the EBRD, said the Taiwan External Trade Development Council, Taiwan's main trade promotion body.
The EBRD was founded help countries in Central and Eastern Europe become market economies, and Taiwanese companies have increased their activities in those regions in recent years, the council said.
They have helped establish an electronic ticketing system for the Ukrainian capital of Kiev and held seminars on mass transportation for officials from Bulgaria, Croatia, Serbia and Romania, according to the council.
At yesterday's seminar, Askar Namazbayev, a principal banker at the EBRD's office in Astana, Kazakhstan, welcomed Taiwanese investors to take part in transportation infrastructure projects in Central Asia.
The EBRD's portfolio in the transportation sector, he said, exceeds 1 billion euros invested in 20 projects, with Kazakhstan the largest country of operations.
Taiwan's investors are welcome to participate in Kazakhstan's first pilot road project, whose tender launch is scheduled for the second half of 2013, and parts of a 2,800-kilometer Western China-Western Europe international transportation corridor that have yet to be completed, the banker said.
“We really look forward to cooperating with Taiwan,” Namazbayev said.