EBRD fears slowing of reform in Eastern Europe

EBRD praises the CEECs for strong economic growth but warns that they have to deepen reforms.

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) praised the Central and Eastern European countries for their strong economic growth but warned that they will have to strengthen their reform efforts to achieve lasting stability and prosperity.

In its annual Transition Report, published on 14 November, the EBRD says that Central and eastern Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States are set to achieve growth this year of almost 5 per cent – the highest rate since the break-up of the Soviet Union.

The report focuses on employment and skills, warning that “the two most abundant assets in eastern Europe – the people and their skills – are under-employed”.

It says that this potential can be unlocked through improvements in the business climate, particularly those that help start-ups.

In many countries, there is also an urgent need to overhaul social safety nets to encourage people to take risks and go into more productive employment.

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