BANK OF ALBANIA
Governor Sejko meets with a World Bank delegation
Publication date: 08.10.2019
On 8 October 2019, the Governor of the Bank of Albania, Mr Gent Sejko, met with a World Bank Group delegation, chaired by Ms Maryam Salim, Country Manager of the World Bank for Albania and Mr Mario Guadamillas, Practice Manager, Europe and Central Asia in the Finance, Competitiveness & Innovation Global Practice. This meeting was held in the framework of joint projects that Bank of Albania has with the World Bank Group, part of Development Policy Loan” instrument .
During the meeting, Governor Sejko presented an overview on the latest economic developments in Albania and highlighted the important contribution of the Bank of Albania in further developing the economy of the country. The accommodative monetary policy implemented by the Bank of Albania has contributed to creating favourable conditions in the economy and the necessary stimulus in the financial markets. Currently, financial markets are characterised by low interest rates, good liquidity situation, increasingly stable exchange rate and an upward lending trend.
In particular, credit to private sector continued to accelerate the growth pace, at an average rate of 7.4% in the first two months of the third quarter. The positive lending trend benefited from the increase in both credit demand and supply. The improvement in demand reflects the declining risk to lending in Albania, as shown by the 11% fall of non-performing loans ratio in August.
The development of Fintech was another aspect discussed in this meeting. Their development has a huge potential in Albania, always through an effective implementation that guarantees safeguarding financial stability. This should be accompanied with the increase of financial literacy as an important component to ensure broader access to financial services and consequently to lending potential.
The World Bank Group representatives commended Governor Sejko and the Bank of Albania on the achieved success of joint projects, as the Bank of Albania has provided maximum commitment in this regard. They discussed on the efforts of the Bank of Albania to mitigate the supply and demand gap for credit, as a possibility to boost lending potential in Albania. The implementation of the Regulation on the out-of-court treatment of borrowers in several banks, who are facing financial difficulties, labelled as “Tirana Approach”, is expected to provide a new stimulus in this regard.
Special attention was also given to the new initiative of the Bank of Albania on the implementation of a plan of measures focusing on lending, drafted by the Bank of Albania in collaboration with commercial banks and the Albanian Association of Banks. This initiative aims at improving lending quality and quantity and the expansion of financial products. Representatives from the World Bank Group affirmed its readiness to contribute to the further development and implementation of this plan.
At the end of the meeting, Governor Sejko and the World Bank Group representatives discussed on the future projects of the Bank of Albania, which will focus on issues related to: financial education; payment services; further boosting of lending; and resolution.
In the framework of this collaboration, today a joint workshop of the Bank of Albania and World Bank Group was held on “The role of the financial sector as catalyst for economic growth” chaired by the Second Deputy Governor of the Bank of Albania, Ms Natasha Ahmetaj and attended by representatives from public institutions and main actors of the financial system.