BANK OF ALBANIA
Governor Sejko attends High-level Conference on “The risks and opportunities in a continuous evolving financial landscape - The way forward”, organised by the Central Bank of the Republic of Kosovo
Publication date: 20.11.2019
On 19 November 2019, the Governor of the Bank of Albania, Mr Gent Sejko, attended the high-level conference on: “The risks and opportunities in a continuous evolving financial landscape - The way forward”, organised by the Central Bank of the Republic of Kosovo (CBRK) on the occasion of its 20th anniversary in Prishtina. Central bank Governors, senior officials from regional supervisory authorities and representatives of international financial institutions attended the Conference.
The conference proceedings were opened by CBRK’s Governor, Mr Fehmi Mehmeti, and was addressed also by H.E. Hashim Thaçi, President of the Republic of Kosovo, and Mr Tao Zhang, Deputy Managing Director at the International Monetary Fund.
During the Conference, discussions focused mainly on the impact of global and European factors on the regional financial sector, including the evolving process that the traditional banking is experiencing, the future challenges imposed by technological innovation and the way how regional regulators may respond to these developments.
In the second session, Governor Sejko shared the view of the Bank of Albania on “The effects of evolving financial landscape: What are the opportunities and risks for financial sector development in emerging market economies - Western Balkan perspective”.
In his discussion, Governor Sejko focused on the progress made in the financial sector and the contribution given by market actors and regulatory authorities in the regional economies and expectations for the future.
Referring to the case of Albania, the Governor highlighted that the banking sector appears as stable and resilient, thus playing an important role in supporting the development of the Albanian economy.
In this framework, he added that the measures taken by the Bank of Albania, in the capacity of the supervisory and regulatory authority, and the mechanisms in place to support the economy have provided the premises for a favourable environment to boost sound lending. In particular, maintaining an accommodative and stimulating monetary policy stance, increased regulatory and supervisory prudence and establishing action plans drawn up jointly with the financial sector and other financial institutions in Albania, have provided positive effects. The latest data show that credit to the private sector increased 7%, on average, while non-performing loans ratio stood at 10%.
Governor Sejko also discussed about technological developments in the banking sector. He stated that consumers will continue to be attracted by the ease of use, higher options and lower costs that the technology provides. In this regard, the Governor stated that banks should monitor developments closely, identify the priorities and risks that accompany the use of technology in financial services, and asses the possible effects and plan accordingly. On their side, supervisory authorities should strive for the same objective, to ensure adequate supervision of new opportunities and challenges.
Mr Sejko pointed also to the importance of collaboration among supervisory authorities of the financial system, as they play a crucial role in ensuring a financial system that is resilient to risks, and provides access and adequate protection to financial services’ consumers.
During the Conference a “Memorandum of Cooperation” in the field of corporate governance was signed among five banking supervisory authorities of the region: the Central Bank of the Republic of Kosovo, the Bank of Albania, the National Bank of North Macedonia, the Central Bank of Montenegro and the Banking Agency of the Federation of Bosnia & Herzegovina. The objective of this Memorandum is to set out collaboration in the fields of: supervision; research; and decision making; related to corporate governance of banks in the region.