Tajikistan: Assistance to the National Bank of Tajikistan with the preparation of a strategy for the insurance sector and optimization of its supervision of the sector

Country: TajikistanStatus: ongoing; Implementation period: January 2023 – July 2024

Name of client: EBRD

Project description:

The Project expected outcome is to contribute to the improvement of market competitiveness and quality of services in Tajikistan’s insurance market, through the provision of tailored policy recommendations to the National Bank of Tajikistan. 

More specifically, the project aims to achieve this by undertaking an assessment of the local insurance market, developing a medium-term strategy and an action plan for the upcoming three year period, indicating key actions to be undertaken to improve the life and non-life insurance market effectiveness framework, the supervisory processes and to encourage use of insurance products by populations. 

Within the project the Consultant performs the following:

1.      Review and assess the current life and non-life insurance industry landscape to identify areas that are hindering its development and benchmark it with best practices, identifying weaknesses and proposing recommendations on how to tackle them as well as integrate with the rest of the financial sector, as well as draw parallels with relevant experience in comparable markets directly pertinent to the Tajik case

2.      Conduct consultations with insurance market participants (including insurance companies, legal and regulatory experts, auditors et al.), in the form of roundtables, to (1) identify current issues resulting perceived to be limiting the progress of the sector and expectations of the NBT’s potential strategy and (2) seek feedback and consultation from the sector on the draft Strategy

3.      Review the adopted regulations and guidelines, through a review of market conduct of insurers, disclosure by insurers and interviews with key function holders

4.      Review the NBT’s organisational structure, with reference to insurance regulation and supervision and enforcement

5.      The Consultant provides a number of information sessions for the NBT’s staff on best standards and practices in issues that are deemed to be particularly relevant for the Tajik market

6.      The Consultant prepares a medium-term strategy and an action plan to be implemented by the NBT in order to help shape the evolution and development of insurance market and the National Bank supervisory capacity. The strategy will formulate actionable reforms required to address the identified gaps in the Report and provide a set of different options/activities to achieve them, with associated pros and cons and timeline for implementation

7.      Design and deliver four training sessions on strategic planning procedures for key NBT staff and market participants

8.      Support the refinement and implementation of strategic recommendations around fiscal policy for the life and non-life insurance sector.

Azerbaijan: Bank Respublika

Corporate strategy enhancement for ESG incorporation

Country: AzerbaijanStatus: ongoing; Implementation period: January 2023 – August 2023

Name of client: EFSE

Project description:

The objective of the project is to support the corporate strategy review of Bank Respublika and the development of a new enhanced strategy that incorporates ESG principles by defining the ESG KPIs. The corporate strategy will define the bank’s institutional priorities and targets, as well as ensure proper adoption and implementation across all departments.

Component 1: Review of corporate strategy and development of the enhanced five-year strategy that incorporates ESG principles

The Consultant, based on the thorough analysis of the bank’s existing strategy, policies, operations, operating environment and future development prospects, provides recommendations for the development of a new enhanced five-year strategy for the bank that will importantly incorporate the ESG principles and institutional KPIs.

Component 2: Preparation for the implementation of the bank’s enhanced strategy across all directions and definition of specific KPIs, including ESG-related, for various business units

The Consultant assists the bank with implementation of the enhanced strategic plan in the bank’s everyday operations across various business lines and track performance against the plan. 

In this regard, the Consultant:

·     Provides recommendations on the analytical and motivation KPIs' structure, including the ESG-related ones, in line with the long-term strategic goals identified under Component 1 and integrated KPIs to a scorecard toolbox

·     Assists BR's finance department to set relevant financial indicators for assessing progress against the new enhanced strategy

·     Provides recommendations on the process of the strategy monitoring, including a structure of strategy reports on a quarterly/semiannual basis

·     Creates, in coordination with the bank, an appropriate dashboard to monitor the progress of the strategic plan in a user-friendly manner

·     Provides recommendations about improvements in the bank's organizational structure, including the establishment of a strategic management unit, overseeing the implementation of the newly adopted strategy

·     Provides recommendations on strategic management process

·     Provides post-project recommendations to assure consistency in further improvement of strategic management in the bank

Azerbaijan: Donor Visibility Event

Financial Intermediaries Capacity Building Technical Cooperation Programme

Country: AzerbaijanStatus: completed; Implementation period: August 2022 – September 2022

Name of client: EBRD

Project description:

The objective of this assignment was to organize a donor visibility event to mark successful completion of a programme to support capacity building of Azerbaijan’s financial institutions. 

Funded by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the European Union (EU) and Türkiye, this programme aimed at strengthening resilience of local financial system and fostering lending to local micro, small and medium sized enterprises (MSMEs).

Taking place from 2019 to 2022, it involved four financial institutions: Bank Respublika, Unibank, TuranBank and MuganBank and covered two key pillars:

The first focused on strengthening strategy and business planning, risk management, IT, compliance and non-performing loans resolution. Feasibility studies have identified development needs and action plans were developed in close consultation with each of the banks. The second pillar aimed at expanding access to finance MSMEs by developing lending operations for individual banks, marketing strategies, training of staff and setting up monitoring and recovery units.

Moldova Agroindbank (MAIB) – Transformation

Country: MoldovaStatus: ongoing; Implementation period: January 2020 – November 2022

Name of client: EBRD

Project description:

The objective
of the assignment is to assist the bank based on the diagnostic review and gaps identified by TA Consult with the transformation of the bank through the implementation of six components as described below.

The Assignment includes six components/modules and within each component the Consultant implements the following:

·         Corporate governance – establishing a robust system of corporate governance based on effective allocation and clear separation of roles and responsibilities between the MB, SC and the shareholders

·         Strategy and business planning – strengthening the current strategic and business planning function, which will take into account the strategic direction of its growth and expansion in line with the vision of the shareholders 

·         Remuneration and motivation schemes – implementing a modern grading and remuneration policy, based on individual performance and the bank’s financial results 

·         MSME Business – developing an effective MSME lending system 

·         Corporate Business – strengthening of business operations in corporate segments

·         IT – strengthen MAIB’s IT function and to ensure it provides sufficient and cost-effective support for its core banking operations

Belarus: Belagroprombank – Reengineering of SME Sales System

Country: BelarusStatus: completed; Implementation period: September 2020 – January 2022

Name of client: Belagroprombank 

Project description:

The objective of this assignment was to assist the bank with optimization of its SME sales system.

The Consultant implemented the following:

·         Detailed analysis of the sales system in small and medium business segment, including the analysis of business processes, including IT support

·         Development of proposals for optimizing business processes in small and medium business and the development of measures for their implementation, such as:

-   optimizing the organizational structure with clearly structured reporting lines for all the key business divisions, as well as support divisions in order to ensure an effective decision-making process, an adequate internal control system;

-   internal procedures and formalization of internal reporting rules between the bank's divisions;

-   implementation of the process of optimization of the branch network and points of sale and centralization of business and support functions;

-   development and strengthening of strategic and business planning, taking into account the directions of growth in accordance with the current business model;

-   assistance in strengthening the independent risk management function, including active management of all types of risks within the bank; development of detailed procedures for managing these types of risks to integrate bank procedures;

-   providing support to the bank in terms of risk management in the process of lending and decision-making;

-   determination of the level of IT-integration between the central office and regional branches;

-   advising on development of recommendations related to the implementation of the CRM system in the bank;

-   development of recommendations for increasing capacity of existing IT-functions, acquisition of additional solutions and ensuring compatibility between different applications.

·         Conducting a short-term pilot project to implement selected recommendations of the Consultant

Azerbaijan: Financial Intermediaries Capacity Building Technical Cooperation Programme – Pillar 1 – Strengthening PFI resilience and sustainability

Country: AzerbaijanStatus: completed; Implementation period: December 2019 – January 2022

Name of client: EBRD

Project description:

The overall objective
of the Programme was to help PFIs to restore and strengthen their resilience and sustainability in the post-crisis environment via:

1) increasing efficiency and transparency of internal processes, including decision-making;
2) enhancing organisational structures and ability to deal with problem loans;
3) training of the local staff; 
5) improving balance sheet structure and profitability.

The Consultant implemented the following:

  • Strategy and business planning: (i) the evaluation and design of the PFI’s strategy; (ii) support in strengthening the PFI’s planning capacity; and (iii) the  implementation of a business plan.

  • Risk management enhancement: development of an effective risk management system for PFIs.

  • Non-performing loans workout and resolution: development of a comprehensive NPL workout and resolution plan, establishment of an NPL workout unit as well as enhancement of the NPL management procedures.

  • IT function review: assessment of an existing IT system capability, and an assessment of the adequacy of the PFI’s MIS / reporting systems;
  • Compliance: establishment or strengthening of the PFI’s Know Your Customer (“KYC”) and Anti-Money Laundering (“AML”) procedures in line with the current best practices.

Moldova Agroindbank (MAIB) – Diagnostics Project

Country: MoldovaStatus: completed; Implementation period: January 2020 – May 2020

Name of client: Moldova Agroindbank (MAIB)

Project description:

The objective
of the assignment was to implement a diagnostics of Moldova Agroindbank and to provide the bank with recommendations and a road map for improvements.

Within the project the Consultant did the following:

·         Implemented the diagnostics of the key areas of the bank’s operations and identified the primary needs for transformation and priorities of the Project;

·         Analyzed the distribution of key functions between the bank's divisions, including regional divisions (branches); 

·         Assessed the bank’s potential in change management;

·         Analyzed the current organizational structure, powers and functions of corporate business units, including SME, and provided basic recommendations for improvements;

·         Analyzed the existing corporate lending process including SME lending, as well as the interaction between business units and the risk unit;

·         Analyzed the quality of the existing procedure of examination of loan applications for corporate and SME clients;

·         Analyzed the existing monitoring system for corporate and SME borrowers;

·         Conducted an express audit of the current structure of the IT department to ensure that it meets the current needs of business units given the transformation plan; 

·         Conducted express audit of IT systems available at the bank.

Uzbekistan: Xalq Bank – Enhancing the Bank’s MSME Lending Capacity

Country: UzbekistanStatus: completed; Implementation period: March 2020 – November 2020

Name of client: Xalq Bank 

Project description:

The objective
of this assignment was to assist the bank to develop and improve the MSME lending methodology and procedures.

The Consultant implemented the following:

·         Diagnostics: detailed analysis of MSME lending practices and comparison with comparable banks and best practices

·         Developed recommendations and proposals for improving the work with MSMEs and development of a program of activities in the following areas: strategic business planning; marketing; organizational structure; business process in MSME lending; risk management; IT/MIS

·         Conducted a short-term pilot project to implement selected recommendations of the Consultant

Belarusbank: Lending – Marketing Survey

Country: BelarusStatus: completed; Implementation period: August 2018 – November 2018

Name of client: Belarusbank

Project description:

Implementation of a marketing survey commissioned by Belarusbank (one of the largest state owned Belarusian banks) with the focus on the following areas:

The Consultant implemented the following:

·         Belarusian and International Corporate Lending Market (including MSME)

·         Banking Products for Artisans

The Consultant carried out the survey and developed a set of recommendations for the Client on the optimal range of credit products and on increasing the volume of lending to MSMEs. The Consultant assessed the needs of corporate customers in the short-term loans, identified gaps in the bank’s marketing strategy and factors influencing the number and the amount of MSME loans disbursed by the bank, as well as reasons for insufficient demand for the bank’s MSME loan products. 

The information was collected through both desk-top research and interviews with Bank’s existing and potential customers. Following the analyses of the information collected, the Consultant prepared a marketing research report and recommendations, and presented the results to the bank’s management.

Belarus: Belinvestbank Institution Building Programme

Country: Belarus; Status: completed; Implementation period: November 2016 – April 2019

Name of client: EBRD

Project description:

The overall objective
of TA Consult in this project is to assist the BIB with institutional strengthening, further commercialisation and increasing its investment attractiveness through the implementation of an IBP, which will focus on:

·         Strengthening of Corporate Governance and organisational restructuring;
·         Strengthening of business operations in retail, MSME and corporate segments, including commercialisation of lending under state programs;
·         Improving risk management and internal control function;
·         Increasing the efficiency of the IT function to ensure it can fully support business operations;
·         Strengthening the Human Resources (“HR”) function;
·         Enhancing product development and marketing activities.

Belarus: Belinvestbank Institution Building Programme - Strengthening Capacities for MSME Lending

Country: Belarus; Status: completed; Implementation period: May 2016 – November 2018

Name of client: EBRD

Project description:

The objective of the Assignment is to increase BIB’s efficiency and competitiveness in providing MSME loans in Minsk and 5 regions in Belarus on a sustainable basis including through identification of gaps, impediments and risks in the current MSME lending system and implementation of institutional capacity building measures.

The MSME credit advisory services allow not only to identify gaps in the key aspects of working with MSME but introduce a systemic approach to MSME lending, help develop and improve the lending methodology, policies, processes, procedures and systems at BIB in MSME lending, improve its underwriting and problem loan workout policies and procedures, strengthen its staff’s skills in credit analysis, assessment of environmental and social risks, monitoring and problem loan workout. The objectives of the Assignment are therefore focused on the following aspects of MSME lending:

·         reviewing and adapting MSME lending methodology, procedures and processes;
·         MSME underwriting techniques;
·         credit risk management, including environmental and social aspects;
·         staff selection and training;
·         marketing/customer service;
·         new product development;
·         portfolio quality management;
·         arrears management.

The scope of the assignment:

·         Conducting an assessment of the current MSME operations at BIB to identify gaps in the key aspects of MSME servicing as well as major impediments and risks to successful development of MSME lending operations;
·         Providing recommendations on improving MSME lending operations at BIB;
·         Training specialised lending personnel through classroom seminars and on-the-job training;
·         Conducting seminars and workshops for senior and middle managers, loan officers, risk managers and back-office staff on all relevant aspects of MSME lending should be conducted;
·         Implementing institution-building measures in BIB to ensure the sustainability of MSME lending after the end of the Assignment.


Russian Federation: Support with Developing Standards for Microlending

Country: Russian Federation; Status: completed, March 2017 – March 2018
Name of client: EBRD

Project description:

The project aims to facilitate MSME support in the Russian Federation by a gradual standardization of approaches to MSME lending for market participants with the objectives to improve risk management, to develop and diversify financial market operations as well as to protect consumer rights as in particular micro enterprises. Within the project the Consultant provides assistance to the Central Bank of Russia in developing the following standards:

A.       Standard for Risk Management;
B.       Standard for Financial Markets Operations (including underwriting and attraction of funding from individuals;
C.        Standard for Assessment of MFIs (for banks);

The key focus of the assignment is:

·       Review and improvement of the existing draft Basic Standard for MFIs on risk management;
·       Assistance in the development of a Basic Standard for Financial Markets Operations (including loan underwriting and attraction of funds from individuals);
·       Assistance in the development of a Basic Standard for the MFIs’ Assessment;
·       Presentation of the above mentioned standards to the market and providing training to market participants.

Financial Literacy Trainings for Agricultural Producers in Ukraine

Country: Ukraine; Status: completed; Implementation period: November 2015 - February 2016

Name of client: Citibank International Limited, Luxembourg Branch c/o EFSE Development Facility

Project description:

The ultimate goal of the project was to facilitate access to finance for agricultural SMEs via increasing their financial literacy and enhancing their financial management skills. 

17 agricultural producers received a dedicated training. The purpose of the training was to enhance the financial knowledge of farmers, required when they apply for a loan at a bank and/or search for other opportunities to finance their business. The training focused on aspects of preventing overindebtedness and understanding of the effective loan terms and conditions, their impact of the cash-flow and profitability of the business, as well as of further (financial and non-financial) requirements of banks towards borrowers.   
The secondary goal of the project was to increase the share of agricultural loans in the SME portfolio of banks. This was achieved via applying the Train-the-Trainer approach. 

12 banks delegated their senior experts, who as a result should be able to deliver similar trainings to clients by him/herself and also to train their colleagues on how to appropriately and responsibly advise agricultural producers when they apply for a loan or for other financial product at the bank.

The Consultant has developed detailed training programmes for agricultural producers and for training of trainers for bankers with the aim to fulfill the main objectives of the project – to improve the access to the banking loans for agricultural producers and prepare them for collaboration with banks.

Consulting Services for Ukrainian Banks on the Agricultural Loan Portfolio Management

Country: Ukraine; Status: completed; Implementation period: August 2015 - November 2015

Name of client: KfW

Project description:

The main purpose of the consulting support was to provide an access to finance for the SMEs in agricultural sector, increase the share of agricultural loans in SME portfolio of the Ukrainian banks participating in trainings/seminars and improve the agricultural loan portfolio quality through the improvement of the skill level of the banks' officers. 

The project was implemented in two phases: 

a)      Assessment of the banks’ needs in consultancy services based on the screening the banks’ officers on the:

·     Existing financial products offered to agricultural clients

·     Monitoring and Risk Management systems for agricultural financial products in place

·     Existing agricultural loan portfolio including loan portfolio quality, etc.

·     Level of skills of the banks' officers on the principles of financial and economic analysis of agricultural clients' business, pledge evaluation, agricultural production cycle, risk assessment etc.

b)     Based on the screening carried out developing a set of trainings/seminars, depending on the different needs and available skills on the following topics: 

·     Financial and economic analysis of agricultural clients' business on a cash flow basis considering all their activities and depending on the existing conditions in the banking sector

·     Cash flow/production output forecast

·     Risk management techniques inherent to the agricultural sector

·     Agricultural loan portfolio management and monitoring

·     Credit model

·     Pledge evaluation/Collateral policy

·     Specific features while development of the loan product with consideration of the specific character of the agricultural sector operations in Ukraine (seasonal prevalence, etc.) and current economic situation, etc.

·     Basic knowledge of the agricultural production cycle typical for the Ukrainian agricultural sector (including agricultural maps)

About 15 banks were covered by consultancy services and about 30 banks’ officers will be trained on subjects stipulated above.


Turkmenistan: Strengthening Capacities for Financial Intermediaries for MSME

Country: Turkmenistan; Status: completed, July 2014 - July 2017

Name of client: EBRD

Project description:

The objective of the TC project is to help develop and improve the MSME lending methodology and procedures in Turkmen banks through institutional capacity building measures.  The project extends to both private and state banks of Turkmenistan – partners of the EBRD MSME project and involves the following activities:

- Implementation of an MSME lending scheme tailored to finance the needs of eligible MSMEs in 2 banks of Turkmenistan;
- Support of institutional strengthening of the PBs;
- Training local managers and loan officers in various techniques of analysing and granting loans and in various methods of recovering them;
- Overseeing proper credit analysis of borrowers; administering and supervising loans and the monitoring of the lending programme overall; problem loan analysis; administration of collection efforts; administration of write-offs and training; and assessment of local personnel;
- Assistance to EBRD in its policy dialogue with the Turkmenistan Government on MSMEs and access to finance, to remove obstacles to efficient MSME lending;
- Ensuring the EBRD environmental and social due diligence procedures are followed by partner banks. 

SDM Bank – Assistance in Implementation of Institution Building Programme

Country: Russian Federation; Status: Completed, 2011-2013
Name of client: SDM Bank, EBRD

Project objective: to assist SDM’s management in implementation of the IBP with the purpose to strengthen SDM’s corporate governance, strategy, operations and internal procedures, including environmental and social, thereby increasing SDM’s efficiency with the goal to increase SDM’s value and attractiveness during the period of EBRD’s Investment.

RSBF TC Programme/BANK Vozrozhdenie –  MSE Lending Support

Country: Russian Federation; Status: Completed, 2012
Name of client: DAI Europe Ltd. 

Project objective: to help Bank Vozrozhdenie implement and maintain the overall sound strategies for lending to MSEs in the new branches ensuring sustainability of MSE lending operations and high portfolio quality.


  • New microlending programme has been rolled out in two bank branches – in Novorossiysk and Volgograd;
  • Necessary management, credit staff are selected and trained for efficient microlending operations in above branches (6 LOs were trained in financial analysis and client acquisition, 6 branch managers were trained in decision making principles on loan approval);
  • Train-the-trainer programme and the internal MSE-lending knowledge replication facility has been placed.

Selected Agent for Implementation of JASMINE Program (EIB project realized by MFC, Warsaw)

Countries: Spain, France, Italy, the Netherlands, UK, Malta, Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary, Slovakia, Latvia.
Status: Completed, 2010-2013

Project objective: to provide tailor-made trainings to JASMINE Beneficiaries in line with the strengths and weaknesses identified by Planet Rating or Microfinanza Rating agencies and reported in their assessment reports.


TA Consult designed and conducted series of trainings for more than 20 non-bank microcredit providers throughout European Union in credit process methodology/ optimization, good governance, strategic planning, credit scoring, IT support and risk management, including risks linked with external sources of funding.

Training “Marketing and Brand Building”

Clients:  1) Hamkorbank, Andijan, Uzbekistan;   2) AMFA, Baku, Azerbaijan, Status: Completed, 2012 - 2014

Project objective: to increase professional level of the client’s staff in marketing, brand building and product development


TA Consult Partners designed and conducted tailor-made trainings covering:

  • Marketing goals and strategies
  • Segmentation and competition analysis
  • SWOT – analysis
  • Principles of marketing research
  • Branding
  • Development and promotion of credit products

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