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EBRI Q1 2019 results: Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Laos top list of most-improved investor locations since 2013

The Euromoney Belt and Road Index (EBRI) reveals the Middle East leapfrogging Africa, with its economic and investor climate improving for the first time.


Net worth: Employment is on the up in Bangladesh

The EBRI Q1 results show Bangladesh moving from tier-two to tier-one status for the first time since signing 27 agreements with China in 2016 for investments and loans worth approximately $20 billion to $25 billion.

It is among the majority of countries (53 out of a total of 68) that have shown improving year-on-year index values, and is one of only three tier-one countries, alongside Ethiopia and Laos, showing the most impressive gains.

Tier-one investor climates in the EBRI rankings are those that have all shown the biggest improvement in their growth rates and/or politico-economic and structural risk situation since China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) – also known as the One Belt, One Road – was first unveiled by president Xi Jinping in 2013.

These rapid gains are understandable to M Nicolas Firzli – director-general of the World Pensions Council, and advisory board member of the World Bank Global Infrastructure Facility – who was one of the original coiners of terms such as the ‘New Silk Road’ and ‘infrastructure-driven development’.

“Not surprisingly, such a massive injection of net-new direct investment money in relatively small or mid-size economies in just five years, from 2013 to 2018, has had a positive effect on long-term growth and economic attractiveness,” he says.

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