Forum Finanz: EBRD Transition Report 2017-18

On 31 January 2018, the series of events known as "Forum Finanz" was dedicated to the Transition Report 2017-18 published by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD). The heading of the report was "Sustaining Growth", which illuminated how, in countries with middle incomes, higher and sustained economic growth can be achieved. 

The event was opened by the head of the Directorate-General for Economic Policy, Financial Markets and Customs Duties at the Austrian Federal Ministry of Finance, Harald Waiglein. Alongside the Chief Economist of the EBRD, in addition, the Director of the Economic Analysis Department at the Oesterreichische Nationalbank, Doris Ritzberger-Grünwald, as well as Robert Stehrer of the Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, discussed the current conclusions.  

Although significant progress was achieved in the target countries of the EBRD region from the 1990s up to the time of the global financial and economic crisis, the same economies are finding it difficult today to rise above the middle-income level (key phrase "middle income trap"). In particular, small and medium-sized businesses are getting further and further behind in terms of productivity as compared with large companies. There exists a catch-up requirement in terms of investment, principally in innovation and infrastructure, in order to increase total factor productivity (TFP). For these national economies, conversion to a new growth model is proposed, and the report makes explicit reference to green growth.

Numerous guests accepted an invitation to attend at the Austrian Federal Ministry of Finance and held an interesting exchange of views with the speakers.

Detailed conclusions and analyses, as well as photos of the event, may be found on our event website