Turkey's PM Erdogan (L) and Egypt's PM Qandil (R) at the EBRD event (Photo:Al-Ahram)
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) will discuss extending aid to Egypt while it transitions to democracy, the bank's governor and Bulgarian Finance Minister Kalin Hristov has said.
The host of the twenty-second annual EBRD Board of Governors meeting, held in Istanbul, said in his opening speech on Friday that the bank would also assist Morocco, Jordan, Tunisia and Kosovo in their democratic transitions.
The opening session of the two-day conference was attended by Egyptian Prime Minister Hisham Qandil, along with his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and high-level officials from Southern and Eastern Mediterranean countries in which the EBRD is active, namely Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Jordan and Yemen.
The EBRD expects to be investing up to €2.5 billion per year in Egypt, Jordan, Morocco and Tunisia by 2015, according to a March 2013 press release.
According to the latest EBRD Regional Economic Prospects report, economic growth has slowed down across the four countries.
In the case of Egypt, the EBRD believes that reaching an agreement with the International Monetary Fund over a $4.8 billion loan "could help cement necessary structural reforms and unlock needed external assistance," according to a Friday press release.