Central and eastern European banks in the EU faced a sluggish 2013, but Poland led the region in terms of growth and the Czech Republic in terms of returns. Baltic banks are also starting to rise to the challenge.
View from EBRD
Date: May 14-15
Location: Tbilisi, Georgia
The 24th Annual Meeting of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) will be held in Tbilisi, Georgia, from May 14 to 15, 2015.
Europe editor, Stefanie Linhardt, will be at the annual meeting and business forum, and will cover the key themes and discussions from the event.
Ahead of the meeting, The Banker’s May edition takes an in-depth look at the EBRD’s traditional core region of central and eastern Europe (CEE), with features on Russia, Georgia and Ukraine, as well as a ranking of the top 100 banks in the EU’s CEE member states, and additional coverage on Belarus and Kyrgyzstan.
The May edition also reports on the EBRD’s more recently added areas of focus in southern Europe and the Middle East with features on Turkey, Morocco and Egypt.
Register today for free access to three articles every month and ensure you are fully up to date with all the topics discussed at the event.
Interview with Natalie Jaresko, finance minister of Ukraine - View from EBRD 2015
Natalie Jaresko, finance minister of Ukraine, speaks to Stefanie Linhardt, The Banker's Europe editor, during the Annual Meeting of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) held in Tbilisi, Georgia.
- Interview with Natalie Jaresko, finance minister of Ukraine - View from EBRD 2015
- Interview with Rimantas Šadžius, finance minister, Lithuania - View from EBRD 2015
- Interview with Mattia Romani, managing director, country and sector economics, EBRD - View from EBRD 2015
- Interview with Steven Fisher, country officer for Ukraine, Citi - View from EBRD 2015
- Interview with Anna Bjerde, director of strategy and operations in Europe and Central Asia, World Bank - View from EBRD 2015
- Interview with Libor Krkoska, head of the EBRD's representative office in Nicosia, Cyprus - View from EBRD 2015
- Interview with Giorgi Kadagidze, governor of the National Bank of Georgia - View from EBRD 2015
The chairman of the board of the National Bank of Belarus, Pavel Kallaur, tells Courtney Fingar about his plans to stabilise the country's currency, as well as keep inflation under control while bringing down interest rates.
The Turkish banking sector is in good health, although the country's lower economic growth, political developments at home and abroad, and the continued impact of financial regulation on retail banking are acting as a brake on growth and profits.
The stand-off between Russia and Ukraine, and the subsequent sanctions imposed on Russia and fall in the value of its currency, has negatively impacted upon the economies of almost all former Soviet republics. In Georgia, however, the country's banks are faring well, in no small part because of the central bank's conservative approach.
Russia’s central bank governor, Elvira Nabiullina, talks to The Banker about what is being done to address the inflation and devaluation of the rouble and the tools she is using to fortify the country’s economy against external shocks.
With the six-month drop in the global oil price stinging the Russian economy, it looked as if the country's government would introduce reforms to protect it against future shocks. But with prices on the brink of a recovery, this positive momentum towards change is in danger of being lost.
Banks in Russia are feeling the force of Western sanctions, with funds from international capital markets slowing and deposits experience a lull, but some institutions are finding ways to maintain commercial relationships with foreign investors.
From dealing with the knock-on effects of the US and EU sanctions on Russia to preparing for the adoption of the euro, Lithuania's finance minister Rimantas Šadžius has been kept busy this year. But, despite the headwinds, Lithuania has managed to record one of the highest GDP growth rates in Europe.
As the need to resolve the eurozone crisis intensifies, member states seem to be moving further apart on key issues, including the architecture of the union and the terms of Greece's bail-out package. But while political rifts open up, many economists agree that the only way forward is by working towards greater economic integration.
Cyprus's banks all passed the European Central Bank's stress tests, a result that is indicative of the recovery that is under way in the country's financial sector. However, for these institutions to return to full health they must tackle their non-performing loans, a feat that is as much in the hands of the country's politicians as its bankers.
Hungary has enjoyed stronger economic growth than many of its European neighbours in recent years, but the country's minister of economy Mihály Varga is wary of taking this success for granted, insisting that the country's long-term outlook hinges on a number of external factors, from the recovery of the eurozone to a resolution of the conflict between Russia and Ukraine.