“One of the lessons I have learnt in my career is that trade finance is a safe business. But in order to be safe, you have to understand what you are financing and with whom you are working. So to know your customer is a basic principle of my business. I only want to do business that I understand, I want to do business with partners whose business I understand, and they want to work with partners who are fair.”
Dr Rudolf Putz is the Head of the Trade Facilitation Programme at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD). In this interview, he explains what it takes to become a development banker, what a typical career trajectory looks like for trade-focused development professionals, and how the EBRD provides trade finance to companies and areas that cannot be serviced by the private sector.