The EBRD 2019 Annual Meeting and Business Forum was held in Sarajevo, on May 8-9. On the last day of Meeting, National Cleaner Production Center for BiH– CENER 21 participated in the Sustainability event to provide expert point of view on Bank’s Sustainability Report and discuss necessary steps toward sustainability in Western Balkan countries.

The panelists were:

  • Jonathan Charles, Managing Director, Communications, EBRD
  • Alistair Clark Managing Director, Environment & Sustainability, EBRD
  • SandaMidžićKurtagić, Program Director, National Cleaner Production Center for Bosnia and Herzegovina – CENER 21.

During dynamic discussion, it was highlighted that brain-drain is one of the major social challenges for the policy makers in developing countries. The problem is linked to loss of investments in human capital and creative work force and acts as barrier to sustainable development. As an effective tool to tackle this major social issue, countries have to develop strategic framework for transition from linear to circular economy concept and investigate circularity potential on local level. NCPC expert advised holistic approach when developing such framework addressing social, environmental and economic challenges. Closing the loop at local level will integrate those challenges and benefit through employment of local labor force, will boost competitiveness of industrial enterprises by implementation of resource efficiency measures while reducing the negative impact on the environment. Innovative business models based on closed cycles and resource efficiency are one of the most powerful drivers of the circular economy.

Panelists concluded that the transition to the circular economy has become an irreversible process and a mainstream policy on which multiple benefits awareness must be raised. Event ended in sustainability award ceremony where EBRD clients are recognized for their remarkable achievements. Gold, Silver and Bronze Awards are presented in four categories: Sustainable Energy; Climate Resilience; Environmental and Social Best Practice; and Environmental and Social Innovation.