On May 15-17, the World Bank, in partnership with International Finance Corporation (IFC), its private sector development arm, and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) conducted knowledge sessions for the officials of the Turkmen banking and financial sector on financial and private sector development.
Some 50 representatives from ministries and government agencies including the Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Economy and Development, Central Bank, Ministry of Labor and Social Protection, the State Insurance Company and a number of commercial banks attended the knowledge sessions facilitated by specialists from the World Bank, IFC, and EBRD. The sessions covered such topics as payment systems, credit registries, secured transactions, bank supervision and regulation, bank privatization, microfinance, leasing, insurance, pension funds and capital markets.
"IFC is keen on collaborating with Turkmenistan in a number of areas", said Moazzam Mekan, IFC Regional Manager for Central Asia. "With extensive experience that IFC has in such areas as bank privatization, leasing operations, establishing credit registries, creating an enabling business environment, and others, we stand ready to complement Turkmen Government efforts in supporting further development of the private sector in Turkmenistan." The main objective of the 3-day event was to provide Turkmen counterparts with the up-to-date knowledge on strategies and policies for financial and private sector development, present best practices, and allow the representatives of the World Bank, IFC and EBRD learn from the authorities on the strategies and plans of the Government of Turkmenistan and discuss opportunities for collaboration.
"The first joint World Bank, IFC and EBRD event for Turkmen officials on financial and private sector development is an important step in aligning the efforts of international financial institutions to provide analytical advice and support to the Government of Turkmenistan in these important sectors of the economy", said Emanuel Salinas Munoz, World Bank Country Sector Coordinator, Financial and Private Sector Development. "Under the proposed Interim Strategy for Turkmenistan, the World Bank Group plans a number of analytical and advisory activities with the aim to assist Turkmenistan integrate in the global financial system." The knowledge sessions are the initial step towards a broader range of activities under the Interim Strategy which is currently being prepared by the World Bank Group and Turkmenistan. Once finalized and approved by the Board of Directors, the Interim Strategy will serve as a platform for expanded cooperation covering up to a two-year period (fiscal years 2014-15, from July 2013 through June 2015). The main purpose of the Interim Strategy is to provide support for analytical and advisory activities designed to assist the government address selected technical issues related to the country’s development priorities. The partnership strategy is expected to cover such areas as: private and financial sector development, macroeconomic management, and other related issues to support the Government’s long-term socioeconomic development program for the benefit of the Turkmen people.