I am glad to join the NBU’s capable, professional team. I take it as a great honor to be part of a state authority that has been a model of successful reform, institutional capacity, and transparency, and that has the trust of the international community.
I worked in the banking sector for 25 years and watched the NBU closely as it changed. The NBU of six years ago and the NBU of today are two completely different institutions. The strengthened central bank has brought the entire financial sector to a new level of quality.
Banking sector reform and consistent monetary and exchange rate policies have laid the groundwork for Ukraine’s macroeconomic and financial stability. Without this foundation to rely on, our country’s relatively safe passage through the coronavirus crisis would have been very different today.
It is not my intention for these achievements to be lost. On the contrary, I aim to multiply them. I put Ukraine and the public interest above all else, as should anyone working in the public sector.
We face many challenges.
I have a clear-cut vision of how the banking and financial sector should evolve in the years ahead.
My platform stands on four priorities:
- Resuming lending to the real economy. The Ukrainian economy, which is currently in crisis caused by the virus, now more than ever, needs the banking system’s resources and support. The real economy is in need of investment, while the Ukrainian people need affordable housing and start-up loans. Therefore, our joint task with the government is to prepare banks for financing sector-wide projects that will give the economy the quality boost it needs. Today, banks already have sufficient funds to lend on a large scale.
- Curtailing banks’ nonperforming loan portfolios. The high share of nonperforming loans at banks is hindering a full resumption of lending. NPLs weigh down on the ability of banks to fully pursue their function as financial intermediaries. As someone who until recently has run a state-owned bank with the least NPL portfolio of all banks, I know exactly how to deliver real results in terms of slashing NPLs.
- Preserving macrofinancial stability. Macrofinancial stability has been an indisputable achievement of the past five years. It lays the groundwork for a stable and healthy economy that we are working to build. There will be no uncontrolled inflation. The exchange rate policy will be balanced. At the same time, monetary policy should promote economic growth.
- Continuing and deepening cooperation with our international partners. This is another of my priorities. Just as the independence of the central bank needs to be maintained, so do constructive relations with the international community.
As NBU Governor, I will use all of my experience and do everything in my power to help improve the Ukrainian people’s quality of life.
Thank you for your attention.