9 foreign banks hold 70 pct of Romanian market and keep exposure unchanged

The 9 foreign banks namely Erste Group Bank, Raifeissen International, Eurobank EFG, National Bank of Greece, Societe Generale, Alpha Bank, Piraeus Bank and Unicredit Group that hold 70 percent of the Romanian market, finalized and signed bilateral letters based on the patterns agreed upon in Brussels, on May 19, according to the objectives established at the meeting in Vienna, on March 26, reads a joint release the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the EU Commission sent to Agerpres on Monday.

The banks commit to maintain the exposure to Romania of the groups they belong to, and increase to 10 percent the capital of their banks subsidiaries’ adequacy ratio, throughout the Economic Programme for Romania.

Within the programme, the IMF and the EU Commission have been conducting a first assessment mission, in Bucharest, for two weeks, also revising the achievement stage of the banks’ commitment. The IMF and the EU Commission’s joint team found that the banks broadly observed the exposure to Romania with some deviations caused by massive transactions taking place around the assessment dates.

The foreign banks’ financial commitment to Romania was consolidated and expanded through the club loan that several banks extended to the Romanian Government, in July.

On Thursday Aug 6, the officials of Romania’s Central Bank (BNR), IMF and the EU Commission met with the local representatives of the nine top lenders in order to analyze the experience gained till at that moment and to discuss the steps to be taken in this important initiative, and to ensure the stability of a significant part of the banking financing available for Romania, which continues providing stability to the banking system, the joint release reads on.

The macroeconomic reform programme’s success and the sustainability of the balance sheet’s equilibrium considerably depend on the active involvement of the nine foreign banks.

The reform programme contributes to the macroeconomic stability, the price stability included, and therefore to the decrease in the risk quota. Competition will later lead to the drop in the interests to the loans the banks give.


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