The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Silk Road Fund to improve co-operation on projects related to the One Belt One Road initiative.

Under the terms of the co-operation agreement, the two parties agree to inform each other on any potential co-investment opportunities in their common regions of operations.

“Today’s memorandum is a new step in an already close working relationship with the Silk Road Fund, which we regard as a key partner in China and potentially in the EBRD countries of operations,” says Phil Bennett, EBRD’s first vice-president. According to him, close collaboration between all stakeholders in the region is vital to bridge the funding gap of about US$400bn a year for necessary infrastructure investments in the region.

“Stretching from Central Asia to Central and Eastern Europe to Northern Africa, the EBRD’s areas of operation cover many strategic nodes along the One Belt One Road initiative, and are important investment destinations for Chinese corporates. We look forward to seeing the two institutions co-finance important projects soon and together promote regional and global connectivity for common development,” says Wang Yanzhi, board member and president of the Silk Road Fund.

The fund was created as a dedicated development and investment fund to supporting infrastructure, resources and energy development, industrial capacity co-operation and financial co-operation in countries and regions involved in China’s One Belt One Road initiative.