由歐洲復興開發銀行（EBRD，European Bank for Reconstruction and Development）召集，3月10日於倫敦舉辦的研討會中，聯合國農糧組織及歐洲銀行業者的官員都表示在東歐、哈薩克斯坦、俄羅斯及烏克蘭，都還有「可觀且未開發的農業生產潛力」。
歐銀表示，銀行會把銀行自己的投資鎖定在發展地區供應鏈上以增加生產，並鎖定發展新的農村資金支援工具。僅僅是在農業產業部份，歐洲復興開發銀行就已經承諾提供49億歐元（約76億美元）在橫跨中歐與東歐及歐洲獨立國協（Commonwealth of Independent States, CIS）的357個計畫上。
World food prices rose by almost 40 percent in 2007, says the UN Food and Agriculture Organization, which is working with European bankers to unlock unused potential in Eastern Europe and Central Asia to produce more food without additional environmental cost.
At a conference Monday in London organized by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, officials of both organizations said there is "significant untapped agricultural production potential" in Eastern Europe and Kazakhstan, Russia and Ukraine.
"There is now an urgent need for both the private and public sectors to work together to create the conditions for sustainable investment that will restore the primacy of this region as a crucial center of agricultural production," said Jean Lemierre, president of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, EBRD.
In these countries around 23 million hectares of arable land were withdrawn from production in recent years. At least 13 million hectares could be returned to production, with no major environmental cost, according to the UN food agency.
Lemierre welcomed the participation of private businesses in the conference, saying this shows their commitment to solving the problem of high food prices. He said business clearly understands that "new and increased investments are now urgently needed."
Governments have responded to rising food prices by introducing price controls, increased subsidies, reduced import barriers and restrictions on exports designed to benefit consumers.
But an EBRD paper submitted to the conference warned that many of these measures, while well-intentioned, could prove to be counterproductive in the longer term.
The EBRD paper encouraged governments to limit interventions that would distort domestic markets or disadvantage producers and traders. Instead, it maintains that "the most effective way to generate a supply response to the rise in global demand is to facilitate investment along the entire agricultural value chain."
Protection of the poorest consumers, it suggests, can be achieved through "targeted income support to the most vulnerable segments of the population."
The bank said it would target its own investments to the development of local supply chains to increase production and to the development of new rural financing instruments.
In the agribusiness sector alone, EBRD has already committed €4.9 billion (US$7.6 billion) in 357 projects across central and Eastern Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States, CIS.
In cooperation with UN food agency, the EBRD paper says the bank will pursue greater policy dialogue to help overcome the lack of communication and effective contact between private sector companies and related authorities in the agricultural sectors across the transition region.