Podgorica, April 7, 2015/ Independent Balkan News Agency
By Adnan Prekic
The Council of Montenegrin Central Bank has issued a license to turkish ‘Ziraat Bank’ to operate in Montenegro. Ziraat Bank applied for permission in December 2014 and it is expected that the Turkish lender will begin opening its branches in the coming months.
The situation in the banking sector in Montenegro in the previous year was stable, but still banks have a number of problems, including the biggest problem of non-performing loans. In Montenegro currently operate 12 banks, out of which only “Prva bank”, “Atlas bank” and “IBM” are with domestic capital.
Montenegro’s Central Bank decided to grant permission to Turkey’s state-run Ziraat Bank to operate in Montenegro. Ziraat Bank is the largest state bank in Turkey. The Ziraat network operates in the fields of insurance, leasing, investment and insurance funds. Along with Vakıfbank and Halkbank, Ziraat is one of the three state lenders which have taken steps to open up interest rate-free participation banks. Ziraat Bank general manager said that the bank will launch licensed banking in Montenegro and Azerbaijan, in addition to opening a branch in Kosovo this year.
The situation in the banking sector in Montenegro in the previous year was stable, but banks have a number of problems, most important of all the non-performing loans. The banking sector at the end of the third quarter of 2014 achieved a positive financial result of 20.72 million euros and it is likely to be the same as last year.
Non-performing loans in Montenegro at the end of October 2014 reached a level of 16.46 percent in total and amounted to 398.9 million euros, which is a 5.7% drop compared to the end of 2013.
Ziraat Bank is the largest state bank in Turkey. The Ziraat network operates in the fields of insurance, leasing, investment and insurance funds.