Nikolaos Nanopoulos

The course of the banking system with regard to figures and results in 2005 was better than what foreign analysts had expected at the beginning of the year; they had spoken about a slowdown in activity and profits. Developments have been very positive, led by the strong growth in households loans. The strong profits of Greek banks in 2005 partially reflected a clearer picture resulting from adoption of International Financial Reporting Standards, which had negatively affected 2004 results. For 2006 we expect satisfying growth in profits, but these will slow down, as will credit expansion to households, from levels of about 30 percent in 2005. Competition will remain intense, leading to constant improvement of products and services as well as of conditions offered to clients, who will benefit more and more. In the meantime, Greek banks will continue their efforts to rationalize their operation by controlling costs, improving competitiveness, modernizing their activities and increasing their external activities. Expanding their business in the broader region of the Balkans and Eastern and Central Europe is of highest strategic significance and will determine their course in the long run. These activities will continue and should lead steadily to a stronger presence of Greek banks, either through acquisitions or by opening own branches, thus creating new profit sources and bolstering the prestige of the Greek banking system in Europe, while supporting Greek entrepreneurship in those countries. The market is also looking forward to the privatization of state banks, namely ATE Bank, Emporiki Bank and the Postal Savings Bank. Nikolaos Nanopoulos is CEO at EFG Eurobank Ergasias.

Subscribe to our Newsletters

Enter your information below to receive our weekly newsletters with the latest insights, opinion pieces and current events straight to your inbox.

By signing up you are agreeing to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.