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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

EBRD Confident in Cabinet




RIGA, Latvia -- The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, looking to build up its level of activity in Russia, has invited newly appointed Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov to visit the development bank's London headquarters, EBRD Acting-President Charles Frank said Monday.


Speaking at a news conference to end the EBRD's annual meeting, Frank said the bank is confident Kasyanov's administration will further reforms.


"We're pleased with the broad commitment to economic reform and some of the appointments to his government are reassuring," Frank said.


Frank noted that the EBRD was familiar with the views of Kasyanov, an economic specialist chosen by President Vladimir Putin last week, as well as with those of Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin, known for his tight control of government purse strings.


"From the government point of view, we take some comfort from these appointments," Frank said.


Frank told reporters on the eve of the meeting the EBRD hopes to raise its investments to pre-1998 crisis levels, focusing on regions and energy.


EBRD investments shrank to 220 million euros ($196.1 million) in 1999, or around 10 percent of total investments, following the country's debt defaults and ruble devaluation, from 550 million euros in 1998.


But with the economy on the mend, Frank said he hopes to raise the investment level to about 30 percent of the EBRD's entire level of activity, or between 750 million and 1 billion euros.