Uncertainty over the outlook for growth remains in the EBRD activity zone

Discussing the report by Cheryl Gillan (United Kingdom, EDG) on the activities of the EBRD in 2013-2014, the Political Affairs Committee observed that this period had been marked by the beginning of recovery from the financial crisis, with control of the public debt in a number of European countries. However, the report adopted by the committee stressed that uncertainty over the prospects for growth persisted and noted an erosion of public confidence in reforms geared to the laws of the market. It also drew attention to the aggravation of the geopolitical tensions between Russia and Ukraine which could have a negative impact on economic growth in the transition region for 2014 and 2015.

At the same time the committee noted with regret that many countries of EBRD operations did not apply the principles of multipartite democracy and had seen “a levelling off of democratic progress”.

In addition, the committee welcomed the expansion of the EBRD’s activities over the past two years to the southern and eastern part of the Mediterranean basin, particularly Jordan, Morocco and Tunisia, which have been granted the status of recipient country, with Egypt retaining that of potential recipient country.

Regarding its medium-term strategy, the EBRD will endeavour to support the activity of governments in transition through political dialogue, to promote economic integration both globally and regionally, and to address common challenges such as climate change, energy and food security and water scarcity.

The report by Ms Gillan, adopted by the committee, reviews the activities of the EBRD in 2013 and 2014, with a particular emphasis on the economic and political developments in the Bank’s region of operations in the last two years.