The Deutsche Bundesbank and the European Commission launch EU-funded follow-up programme to further support central banks and banking supervisory agencies in EU candidate countries and potential candidates from the Western Balkans

Publication date: 13.04.2023


The Deutsche Bundesbank, together with 19 national central banks of the European System of Central Banks (ESCB) and the European Central Bank (ECB), have today launched an EU-funded programme to benefit the Bank of Albania, the Central Bank of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Banking Agency of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Banking Agency of Republika Srpska, the Central Bank of the Republic of Kosovo, the Central Bank of Montenegro, the National Bank of the Republic of North Macedonia and the National Bank of Serbia. The aim of the programme is to further strengthen the institutional capacities of the final beneficiary institutions, notably by enhancing their analytical and policy tools and by transferring the best international and European standards into national practices. The European Union (EU) supports the programme through its Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA III).

At the kick-off event held today at Banca d’Italia, Senior Deputy Governor Luigi Federico Signorini reaffirmed the importance of international technical cooperation as an instrument for institutional dialogue, contributing to building prosperity and peace. The strategic significance of this project in the wider framework of EU accession is underscored by the aim and breadth of the programme and is especially relevant in the current circumstances of widespread geopolitical, economic and financial challenges.

Mr Florian Hauser from the European Commission’s Directorate General for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations underlined that “the programme represents an important contribution to improving economic governance and enhancing institutional framework in the Western Balkans. It supports the preparation of the Western Balkans central banks for their integration into the European System of Central Banks.” Ms Alexandra Hachmeister, Director General at the Deutsche Bundesbank, highlighted the importance of achieving sustainable results and the relevance of relationship building.

Over the course of the next 36 months, the Bundesbank, together with the partner central banks and with contributions by the ECB, will organise an intensive regional training programme on key central banking and supervisory issues. The training will focus particularly on the areas of anti-money laundering, banking supervision, financial stability, financial consumer protection and financial inclusion, bank resolution, communication, financial markets, information technology, monetary policy research, payment systems, statistics, EU integration, governance policies, accounting and internal audit. There will also be three policy workshops for decision-makers on payment systems, cash management and governance issues. Furthermore, the programme will support the implementation of specific bilateral measures in addition to the regional training events.

The programme is being implemented by the Bundesbank as its coordinator in partnership with the Nationale Bank van België/Banque Nationale de Belgique, Българска народна банка (Bulgarian National Bank), Česká národní banka, the Bank of Greece, the Banco de España, the Banque de France, Hrvatska narodna banka, the Central Bank of Ireland, the Banca d’Italia, Lietuvos bankas, the Banque centrale du Luxembourg, the Magyar Nemzeti Bank, De Nederlandsche Bank, the Oesterreichische Nationalbank, Narodowy Bank Polski, the Banco de Portugal, Banca Naţională a României, Banka Slovenije and Národná banka Slovenska. The European Central Bank will contribute to the project’s implementation.