Tanaka: EBRD to Invest €25 billion in Energy Efficiency Projects in 29 Countries, Libya is Welcome as Member

The Managing Director for Energy Efficiency and Climate Change at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), Josué Tanaka, said on 18 May that EBRD is willing to expand its operations to Libya as soon as Libyan authorities decide to apply for membership to EBRD as a country of operation.

Mr. Tanaka was speaking at a press conference in London on Friday when he was asked by The Tripoli Post correspondent about EBRD's intentions to expand its operations in Libya.

Mr. Tanaka said ""EBRD has not started to do any work in Libya yet as it needs the Libyan authorities permission to do so, and for Libya to be a member in EBRD, it is up to the Libyan government to decide and apply for a membership as a country of operation." He welcomed the presence of The Tripoli Post as the first Libyan newspaper to attend the EBRD's Annual Meeting which was held from 17 till 19 May 2012 in London.

Tanaka unveiled the details of the next phase of Sustainable Energy Initiative (SEI) (2012-14) and its goals.

SEI's next phase addresses the challenge of climate change by focussing on energy efficiency and renewable energy and aims to deliver an annual cut in carbon emissions in its countries of operations as large as 32 million tonnes as Mr Tanaka explains, confirming the EBRD's efforts to improve energy efficiency and deal with the threat of climate change with new investment in projects worth up to €25 billion over the next three years.

He said "the initiative is by now one of the world's most significant programmes of its kind with concrete results in terms of carbon emissions reductions across 29 countries". About Bank's expansion into the southern and eastern Mediterranean, Mr Tanaka said " EBRD has expanded its investments in Tunisia, Egypt, Jordan and Morocco", adding:

"The Bank's expansion into the southern and eastern Mediterranean also presents it with opportunities to share its operational, financial and policy expertise with new countries". "The EBRD has established a strong track record in energy efficiency financing with a particular focus on the private sector and on achieving results on the ground in 29 countries," said Mr Tanaka, adding

"This experience is relevant not only to the expanding region of operations of the EBRD to reduce the impact of rising energy prices and to boost the competitiveness of enterprises, but to the scaling-up of financing to address climate change.

"As the global community works on addressing the climate change challenge, the EBRD experience with SEI provides a set of effective financing instruments to work with governments and the private sector to boost energy efficiency and renewable energy," Mr Tanaka said.

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is an international financial institution that supports projects in 29 countries, from central Europe to central Asia. Investing primarily in private sector clients whose needs cannot be fully met by the market, the Bank promotes entrepreneurship and fosters transition towards open and democratic market economies.

(EBRD) is the first international financial institution of the post Cold War period. It was established in 1991 in response to major changes in the political and economic climate in central and eastern Europe. Inaugurated less than two years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, the Bank was created to support the development of market economies in the region following the widespread collapse of communist regimes.

Differing from other development banks, the EBRD operates under a mandate that has political aspects, in that it seeks to assist only those countries that are "committed to and applying the principles of multi-party democracy pluralism.” The Bank promotes environmentally sustainable development in all its activities, making it the only IFI with such a determined approach to the environment.

The Bank believes that sustainable development is fundamental to sound business practice and to ensure this, all of the Bank's investment projects are screened in compliance with the its Environmental and Social Policy.

(Source: The Tripoli Post)

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