EBRD ready to participate in privatization of IBA
Baku, Azerbaijan, Sept. 21
By Anvar Mammadov – Trend:
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is looking forward to the opportunity to participate in the privatization of the International Bank of Azerbaijan (IBA), Anton Usov, EBRD’s chief spokesman for Eastern Europe and the Caucasus, told Trend.
He said that the EBRD has the necessary means and experience to facilitate this process.
The IBA is the biggest bank of Azerbaijan, and it is very important for the banking system of the country, he said.
Attraction of private capital in an orderly and transparent manner will make it possible to ensure the bank’s management in accordance with the best world standards and practices, he noted, adding that this will ensure proper internal control and effective management supervision.
Of course, it is too early to say when and under what conditions the EBRD may invest in the IBA’s capital, but the EBRD is glad that the Azerbaijani government positively assesses privatization of the IBA, he added.
Earlier, Reuters reported citing EBRD President Suma Chakrabarti that the EBRD may become a shareholder of the IBA.
“We spoke to the [Azerbaijani] president, we said we would be happy to help in restructuring and refocusing of this bank,” Chakrabarti said.
He added that the key for the EBRD to seriously consider becoming a shareholder in IBA would be a “corporate governance reform” at the bank.
On July 15, 2015, President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev signed a decree on the measures for rehabilitation related to the preparations for privatizing the state-owned shares of the International Bank of Azerbaijan OJSC.
In order to restore the bank's financial position, the distressed assets of the bank were transferred to state-owned Aqrarkredit non-bank credit organization. Aqrarkredit CJSC provides the IBA with liquid assets in exchange for distressed assets.
Restructuring of IBA’s foreign liabilities has been recently completed.
Azerbaijan has been a member of EBRD since 1992. Since then, the bank has invested about $2.8 billion in 161 projects in Azerbaijan’s financial, corporate, infrastructure and energy sectors.