AT LEAST ONE BULGARIAN IN EACH BANK?
According to the new draft amendments to the Banks Act, moved to Parliament before Christmas, the managing teams of all credit institutions operating in Bulgaria should employ at least one Bulgarian citizen. It's sad, though, that the current situation has forced the lawmakers to add another requirement for the Bulgarian bank managers - they must be fluent in Bulgarian. The third requirement is that they have lived in Bulgaria for at least one year before they were employed by the bank. The restrictions stipulated by the draft law will not refer to the members of the supervisory boards.At present, foreigners who represent banks in Bulgaria are required to have a permanent address in the country as well as to have long-resident registration.The bill has been drafted by a group of deputies from the NMSII, headed by Nikolay Buchkov. According to them, it is not right that the managers of commercial banks would have problems in their communications with the BNB, with their clients and personnel. In addition, the MPs have written in their motives that the requirement that a Bulgarian citizen should be employed in the managerial teams of banks with foreign participation will help them to adapt more quickly to the local market.If passed, the amendments won't affect most of the credit institutions with foreign capital. They have long ago realized the advantages which experienced local staff gives them. The BANKER weekly has established that only three banks with foreign participation do not have a Bulgarian citizen in their managerial teams. These are BNP Paribas (Bulgaria), Commercial Bank of Greece (Bulgaria), and HEBROSBANK (Alexander Tzachev is a curator there). The branches of the National Bank of Greece (Bulgaria) and Ziraat Bankasu are managed by foreigners only, but the restrictive measure won't apply to these structures.