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Armenia: New Enterprise Loan May Be Approved Soon

Washington, 26 November 1996 (RFE/RL) - World Bank officials say a proposed loan of around $16 million to assist Armenia in private enterprise development may go to the Board of Executive Directors for final approval as early as next month.

The officials say the loan has been under discussion for over two years and will, if approved by the board, provide a line of credit to be used by selected Armenian banks to underwrite new and developing private business enterprises in the country.

Elements of the program would include investments in export-oriented enterprises and technical assistance programs for banks, the Yerevan stock exchange and government agencies working on privatization as well as bank and securities regulation.

The loan is being coordinated with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the U.S. AID program, Dutch trust funds and several other multilateral and national institutions which are expected to provide additional loans and investments totaling around $30 million.