An agreement on moving the headquarters of the International Investment Bank (IIB) from Moscow to Budapest was signed by Hungarian Minister of Finance Mihály Varga and IIB Chairman Nikolay Kosov in Budapest on Tuesday, state news agency MTI reported.
Moving the IIB headquarters to Hungary will further strengthen the role of the country and Budapest as an international financial center, Varga said after the signing. From Budapest, the IIB can network better with European financial institutions and other international development banks, allowing it to take on a significant role in supporting investments in Central Europe, in corporate lending and in international financial affairs, he added.
The IIBʼs board of governors took a unanimous decision in December to relocate the lenderʼs headquarters to Budapest. The institution is headquartered in Moscow at present.
Kosov said the agreement was "historical and unprecedented." He expressed his gratitude to the government of Hungary, noting that the renewal of Hungaryʼs membership in the IIB in 2015 "gave the bank a revival and an additional impetus to development."
"A European address will help IIB to expand its international capital markets base, improve credit ratings, ensure a substantial increase in capital, boost lending and investment activity, increase brand awareness and attractiveness of the institute for new shareholders," the IIB said on its website.
The IIB plans to begin operating from Budapest in the first half of 2019 after the agreement signed on Tuesday is ratified by Hungaryʼs Parliament.
The IIBʼs outlays in Hungary have reached EUR 100 million over the past three years, Kosov was cited by MTI as saying.