The Bank of Albania – Round Table

The Bank of Albania organised a round table with the business organisations and local banks, first of its type under the new governance. The aim of the meeting was to encourage innovative suggestions as well as emphasise the importance of the transparency in banking system.

The Albanian British Chamber of Commerce and Industry values the efforts in bringing together stakeholders and also suggested to the round table that the participation of policy makers should also be taken into account as most of the suggestions coming out of such round table very often do require new or adjustment to the existing legislation. Furthermore most of the negative effects we currently face are consequences of the fiscal and tax changes proposed by the government and approved by the parliament.

The Chamber emphasised the important role that the Bank of Albania can and should play in encouraging foreign investments and presented the following proposals to the Bank of Albania and the participants at the Round Table.

1 – The Central Bank of Albania (CBA) can help create a climate or tools to encourage/attract Foreign investment/loans for local businesses (especially in specific priority sectors like Energy, Agriculture, Tourism) by:

  • facilitating the hedging of long term currency risk (3-5years) from EUR or USD to Albanian Lek. This will help both the local businesses as they would be able to borrow from overseas but have no foreign currency risk, but also will make it more attractive for foreign investors to examine long term investment in Albanian business. The CBA can also act as a high grade counterparty for providing these hedges/swaps
  • help to push lawmakers, and promote policies that make it simpler for lenders to obtain security, and enforce security/seize assets quickly when there is a default. A clear vision of how they can recover their investment in case of difficulty will promote foreign investment to help local businesses.
  • helping to force lawmakers and banks and businesses to adopt international accounting standards, promote transparency, and eliminate the practice of double book keeping.

2 – Help to promote insurance in Agri-business.

The Chamber will have further discussions with the Bank to further elaborate on the above proposals and assist in any way possible.

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