VTB Capital to Invest in southeast Europe Expansion

VTB Capital Plc, Russian investment bank, plans to invest “several hundred million euros” in the southeast European countries in the next few years, the bank’s chief executive said. They opened an office in the Bulgarian capital Sofia to help expand in southeast Europe as western investors pull cash from the region because of the debt crisis at home.

“I’ll be happy if we invest several hundred million euros in the next few years in various projects in Bulgaria, Romania, Serbia and Greece.” VTB Capital Chief Executive Officer Atanas Bostandjiev said in an interview in Sofia . “There are good opportunities in the energy, transport, telecommunications and agriculture industries everywhere in the region.”

Balkan countries including Serbia and Romania are struggling to narrow budget gaps and raise funds through state- asset sales. Western investors are cautious to invest in the region, on concern the Greek debt crisis will further hinder economic growth.

“We’ll be looking at privatization deals planned in Bulgaria, Serbia and Romania,” Bostandjiev said. “We are interested in the planned sale of the Romanian railways freight unit. Serbia is planning bank sales, which are of interest. Similar deals in Slovenia and Croatia are also of interest.”

Source: Bloomberg