Panel: Banks Need Stable Governance

17. 04. 2014

Panel: Banks Need Stable Governance

Finance Minister Uroš Čufer stressed at a panel on the prospects of the European and Slovenian banking systems on Wednesday that banks needed stable governance so that they can carry out the ongoing processes without fear.

"The worst thing to do would be to start replacing one board after the other, which would create a situation in which nobody dare do anything," he said.


Responding to a statement by France Arhar of the Slovenian Bank Association, which organised the panel, that the state was nationalising instead of moving out of the banks, Čufer noted the government's concept was aimed at ensuring that all the capital earmarked for shoring-up the economy went through the banks.

"We need to act fast and act accordingly - we're on the right path," Čufer stressed.


He moreover noted that members of the Bank Association had adopted a new agreement on the restructuring of companies aimed at harmonizing their actions.



He believes that the process of corporate deleveraging will last for another few months and is key in putting Slovenia back on the map of countries with a solid economic growth.


Chairman of Slovenia's biggest bank NLB Janko Medja meanwhile said that measures implemented by the state and the central bank helped stabilise the banking sector.

"However, this is only the first 20% of the path. The remaining 80% are key - the banks need to create enough value to be able to absorb future credit impairments by themselves."


Medja also stressed that too much talk was aimed at trivial issues and too little on the key problem - the competitiveness of banks and companies. "Companies have to boost their international competitiveness rather than expect to maintain the status quo by constant influx of fresh loans."


Minister Čufer noted that figures show that the economy's indebtedness and the impact this had on banks had created some EUR 1.5bn in tax dues. "Our next step is to do something about it...," Čufer said, adding that the ministry was considering allowing companies capable of paying taxes to pay their dues over a longer period of time.


He moreover said the state would continue its efforts to shore up and privatise banks in a transparent way without hindering the economy.


Vice-governor of the central bank Stanislava Zadravec Caprirolo meanwhile noted that Slovenia was not fast enough in tackling its problems. "Slovenia started tackling its problems at least three years too late, which is why it will pay such a high price."

Apart from that, Zadravec Caprirolo expressed criticism of those who were in charge of Slovenia's economic policies at the outbreak of the crisis, as European countries earmarked most of their funds for shoring up their financial systems before 2010. "They did not have to abide by rules of state aid. Maybe bankers don't know that, but those who were in charge of economic policies in our country did or should have known that."


Arhar meanwhile touched on the forming of the European banking union, consisting of 8,000 banks, stressing the creation of a monetary union had been easier. He expressed concern over differences in understanding of and the approach to the union.


Source: sloveniatimes

Panel: Banks Need Stable Governance