Eurasian Development Bank council agrees to reduce Russia’s stake - document

Eurasian Development Bank council agrees to reduce Russia’s stake - document
The Eurasian Development Bank was set up to promote closer integration between its members, Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan, but since the start of the war in Ukraine, the members have agreed to downscale Russia's involvement. / bne IntelliNews
By bne IntelliNews January 5, 2023

Russia will lose its majority stake in the Eurasian Development Bank (EDB) after the council of the Kazakhstan-based bank approved a redistribution of member states’ shares, according to a document seen by bne IntelliNews.

Russia’s share in the EDB will be reduced to less than 45%, while the remainder of its shares will be equally distributed among the other member states, according to a unanimous decision of the EDB’s council taken on December 30, 2022, the document showed.

The EDB is a development bank set up by Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan in 2006 to designed to finance big cross-border projects that integrate the economies of the member states more closely. The trade aspect of the bank’s work became of particular importance following the launch of the Customs Union on January 1, 2010, which later became the Eurasia Economic Union (EUU), the east’s version of the EU.

The redistribution of EDB shares held by Russia has been approved in general by EDB’s shareholders and governments of the bank’s member states but it has not yet been finalised on paper, a source familiar with the matter told bne IntelliNews.

“The upcoming signing of the international agreements regarding the transfer of Russia’s shares is a purely technical step that is needed to register the actual transfer of the shares,” the source said.

The EDB did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

For more than 16 years, the bank has worked to strengthen and expand economic ties and foster comprehensive development in its member countries. The EDB's charter capital totals $7bn. Its portfolio consists principally of projects with an integration effect in transport infrastructure, digital systems, green energy, agriculture, manufacturing, and mechanical engineering. The Bank’s operations are guided by the UN Sustainable Development Goals and ESG principles, according to EDB.