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Uzbekistan to reform banking system

11 December 2015

A program to further reform the banking system for 2016-2020 is being developed in Uzbekistan, the country's central bank said Dec.11.

The program will provide for a further increase in the efficiency of the banks and the level of financial mediation in economy, strengthening of financial stability and liquidity of banks in accordance with international standards, improving the quality of bank assets and loan portfolio, further development of the evaluation system of bank risks in accordance with the standards of the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision (BCBS) (Basel III).

Uzbekistan is currently taking steps to gradual implementation of the Basel III standards, in particular to improve the quality of capital with a phased increase in the minimum regulatory capital adequacy ratio from 10 percent to 14.5 percent in view of the capital conservation buffer in the amount of three percent of the risk-weighted assets, according to the central bank.

It is also planned to gradually increase the minimum capital adequacy ratio (CAR) of the first level from 5 percent to 11 percent taking into account the capital conservation buffer in the amount of three percent of the total risk-weighted assets.

Since the beginning of 2016, it is scheduled to introduce the liquidity coverage ratio (LCR) coefficient (ratio of liquid assets of high quality to a net cash outflow for the implementation period of up to 30 days), and since the beginning of 2018 - the coefficient of the net stable funding ratio (NSFR) (ratio of the available amount of stable funding resources to the required amount of stable funding).

The document will also include measures to expand the range and quality of banking services with the widespread introduction of modern ICT, development of private banks and reducing the government stake in the capital of banks.

There are 26 commercial banks in the banking system of Uzbekistan, including three state-owned, five with the participation of foreign capital, seven private and 11 joint-stock ones.

The total assets of commercial banks at the beginning of October 2015 amounted to 62.1 trillion soums (UZS), which is 10.5 percent higher than the final index for 2014, the total loan portfolio of banks of the republic - 39.7 trillion soums (a 14.1 percent increase), the aggregate bank rose to 7.4 trillion soums from 6.9 trillion soums in 2014 (a 7.2 percent increase).

The official exchange rate on December 11 is 2765.20 UZS/$1.

The capital adequacy ratio of the banking system of Uzbekistan amounts to 23.6 percent, which is almost 2.5 times higher than the requirements of current international standards, according to the central bank. The level of current liquidity of banks is 64.5 percent, which is twice higher than the minimum standards adopted in the world practice.