Supporting SMEs Along China’s Belt and Road Initiative

Teatro Lirico Giuseppe Verdi, Trieste, 19 May 2016.

IMG_7669Redmont Consulting has participated in the conference “Supporting Local Enterprises and SMEs, Along China’s Belt and Road Initiative in South Eastern Europe”, held in Trieste on 19 May 2016 and organised by the Central European Initiative and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. Among the participants to the event – sponsored by the Presidency of the Council of Ministers – the Italian Minister for Transports and Infrastructures Graziano Delrio, the Undersecretary to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Vincenzo Amendola, the EBRD Acting Vice President Policy and Partnership Alain Pilloux, The CEI Secretary General Ambassador Giovanni Caracciolo di Vietri, the Mayor of Trieste Roberto Cosolini, the President of Autonomous Region Friuli Venezia Giulia Debora Serracchiani, the Minister of Foreign Affairs for Bosnia and Herzegovina Igor Crnadak, the Chinese Ambassador in Italy Li Ruiyu and the President of the Silk Road Fund Wang Yanzhi, in addition to a number of other authorities representing various countries of central and eastern Europe.

In his opening speech, Ambassador Caracciolo di Vietri emphasised the importance of CEI-EBRD relations (sealed, during this week, with a replenishment of the CEI Fund at the EBRD, authorised by the Italian Government through D.L. 67 dated 16 May 2016, art. 9), which led to the organisation of the conference thus facilitating the opportunity, for Chinese funds, to be invested in the countries of operation.

For Ambassador Ruiyu, SMEs are at the centre of the Silk Road Fund strategy, with 4.8 billion dollars of investments provided by the Chinese initiative, and with Italy as the main beneficiary.

For President Yanzhi, the Belt and Road initiative boasts an availability of 40 billion dollars and aims to promote economic and social connectivity between China and Asia, and Europe. Medium and long-term investments mainly concentrate on the energy and infrastructure sectors but the Silk Road Fund is now looking forward to a stronger collaboration with the IFIs, to potentiate the support of SMEs.

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