Skip to main content

Unlocking the growth potential: regional economic corridors in South East Europe

Panel Discussion

Cross-border trade and investment levels and regional integration in South East Europe remain below potential, reflecting persistent problems with the business environment, market fragmentation, and low-quality infrastructure. In a period of elevated geopolitical uncertainties, the need to catalyse the growth potential in the region is evident. A distinguished panel of policy makers and experts will consider the potential benefits of deeper regional integration in energy, digitalization, and transportation in the context of European integration, targeted support from international financial institutions and increasing private sector involvement.

Meet our speakers and chair:

Sue Barett is the EBRD Director of Infrastructure in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Covering 25 countries, her team focuses on sustainable infrastructure investments in all of the transport, municipal and environmental subsectors. Sue is responsible for a EUR 9.6 billion infrastructure portfolio and finances around 45 deals totalling €1.2bn annually, supported by technical assistance funded by EBRD’s shareholders and donors. Her team also mobilises grant funding to support EBRD’s investments in best available technologies, climate adaptation and affordable and inclusive infrastructure.  Prior to joining EBRD, Sue was a Senior Manager at PWC, advising on privatisation and regulation of utilities. She has an MSc in Economics from the London School of Economics.  

Will Bartlett is Visiting Senior Fellow at LSEE Research on South Eastern Europe, LSE. Will is an economist and former Deputy Director of the Research Unit on Southeastern Europe (LSEE) at the LSE’s European Institute. His research has focused on the socio-economic development of the Western Balkans. He has carried out numerous research projects including an evaluation of the Economic and Investment Plan for the Western Balkans for the European Parliament, and other projects in the region for the European Commission, European Training Foundation and the British Council. He is author of Europe’s Troubled Region: Economic Development, Institutional Reform and Social Welfare in the Western Balkans, published by Routledge in 2008. 

Slavo Radosevic is Professor of Industry and Innovation Studies at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies, Faculty of Arts & Humanities, University College London. His work spans from being a researcher at the University of Sussex SPRU and in Croatia to having roles in the Yugoslav government. Specialising in science, technology, and industrial change in Europe, especially Central and Eastern Europe, Radosevic publishes widely and favours neo-Schumpeterian economics in his empirically driven, policy-relevant research. He consults for international bodies like the EC, OECD, and World Bank and advises the EC in different capacities on regional and innovation policy.

Matteo Rivellini is the Head of Division Western Balkans and Turkey, European Investment Bank (EIB), and specializes in infrastructure, impact, and development finance across Central Europe, Italy, Türkiye, and the Western Balkans. He leads a team of 20+ bankers, annually financing EUR 1.5 billion for sustainable investments in Türkiye and the Western Balkans, focusing on green transition, digital transformation, transport, SMEs, and impact finance. Matteo coordinated the EIB's involvement in EU-funded platforms and initiatives (e.g. WBIF, Türkiye Investment Platform, Economic Resilience Initiative)  including the Trans Adriatic Pipeline financing. Previous roles as advisor to the EIB Italian Vice-President and legal advisor enriched his strategic profile. He speaks at international events on investment financing, particularly in EU enlargement regions, and has authored publications on sustainability and policymaking. Notably, he published "Hope and Strength in the Western Balkans" and "Finance for Sustainability: a Useful Tool for Policymakers.

Anthony Bartzokas is Professorial Fellow at the United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology, Visiting Professor in Practice at the London School of Economics and Political Science, and an Associate Professor at the University of Athens with extensive experience in academia, policy relevant research and real-life exposure to investment decisions, innovation dynamics and financial markets as a former European Bank for Reconstruction and Development Board Member. During his fellowship at LSE, Prof Bartzokas is working on three projects: (a) The political economy of macroeconomic adjustment (the case of Greece), (b) Regional economic corridors in South East Europe and (c) Financial Innovation and Multilateral Development Banks.

Vassilis Monastiriotis is Professor in Political Economy and Eleftherios Venizelos Chair of Contemporary Greek Studies.  

16 May 2024