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CEB Governor in Brussels for High-Level Economic Dialogue EU-Turkey

8 December 2017

High-Level Economic Dialogue EU-TurkeyBRUSSELS - The Governor of the Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB), Rolf Wenzel, participated in the second edition of the EU-Turkey High-Level Economic Dialogue, which took place in Brussels on 7-8 December. 

This year’s High-Level Economic Dialogue addressed questions relating to the economic situation, ongoing reforms, and business opportunities in Turkey and the European Union. European Commission Vice-President for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness Jyrki Katainen opened the discussion and stressed the importance of the rule of law as a prerequisite for Turkey’s economic and social development and for private sector investment. 

The morning session focused on SME policy and innovation/skills. In his statement, the Governor highlighted that SMEs in Turkey needed support so as to improve their innovation capacity and enhance the skills of their employees, and said: “Although SMEs are the backbone of the Turkish economy, the funding costs for them are still very high.” 

The focus of the afternoon session was on “Structural reform challenges and policies” in Turkey as well as macro-economic prospects for the mid-term. “While economic forecasts have recently been revised upwards, nevertheless 2018 is expected to be a crucial year for restoring and maintaining confidence in Turkish economic and financial policies as a means of ensuring economic and financial stability”, said Governor Wenzel, who highlighted in his statement the need for job creation. 

Commenting on the event as a whole, the CEB Governor welcomed the High-Level Economic Dialogue between the EU and Turkey as an opportunity for a frank exchange of views on positive aspects of cooperation and also on challenges. 

Turkey, a founding member of the CEB, has received numerous loans for social projects from the Bank since 1956. The sectors which have benefited the most from CEB funding are the creation and preservation of viable jobs and the prevention of natural disasters.

Set up in 1956, the CEB (Council of Europe Development Bank) has 41 member states. Twenty-two Central, Eastern and South Eastern European countries, forming the Bank's target countries, are listed among the member states. As a major instrument of the policy of solidarity in Europe, the Bank finances social projects by making available resources raised in conditions reflecting the quality of its rating (Aa1 with Moody's, outlook stable, AA+ with Standard & Poor's, outlook positive and AA+ with Fitch Ratings, outlook stable). It thus grants loans to its member states, and to financial institutions and local authorities in its member states for the financing of projects in the social sector, in accordance with its Articles of Agreement.

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