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Kyrgyzstan: EBRD Invests In First Foreign-Owned Commercial Bank

Bishkek, 8 November 1996 (RFE/RL) -- The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development says it is subscribing to a $300,000 equity investment in Kyrgyzstan's first foreign-owned commercial bank.

The new bank, called DemirKyrgyz International Bank (DIB), would offer a full range of banking services but plans to focus on international payments and trade financing. The EBRD says DIB also intends to work with the National Bank of Kyrgyzstan to help reform the interbank market.

The EBRD's co-director of financial institutions, Pierre Mellinger, says boosting confidence in Kyrgyzstan's banking sector is a priority. He said the EBRD sees the new bank as a catalyst for developing the entire sector.

He said the EBRD would provide a $2 million credit line for short to medium-term finance in Kyrgyzstan's private sector once DIB is well established and operating in the local market place.

The principal shareholder of DIB is Demirbank (DMB), a private commercial bank established under Turkish law. DMB holds an initial 60 percent of the new bank's authorized ordinary shares.