Bulgarian National Bank rolls out EUR 4.75 billion to offset COVID-19 impact

Bulgaria

Correct as of 25 March 2020. This article is being maintained.

On 19 March 2020, the Bulgarian National Bank (BNB) announced it was enacting EUR 4.75 billion worth of measures to counteract the impact of COVID-19 in the country.

The actions are intended to both ensure the stability of the banking system and improve the system's flexibility and ability to counter the negative economic effects of the current crisis.

The main measures are aimed at strengthening the capital and liquidity of the banks, and include:

  • capitalisation of the entire profit in the banking system, amounting to approximately EUR 818 million;

  • cancellation of the anticipated increases of the countercyclical capital buffers for 2020 and 2021, amounting to approximately EUR 360 million; and

  • increasing the capital liquidity of the national banks with approximately EUR 3.6 billion, by limiting the foreign exposures of credit institutions.

In addition, the regulator is taking further measures to guarantee the functioning of the currency board, cash circulation, ongoing banking supervision and operation of the payment systems. The regulator stated that it is watching the situation closely, and may implement further measures.

On a separate note, it was announced on 16 March 2020 that the state-owned Bulgarian Development Bank would receive EUR 255 million to support business affected by the developing circumstances.

We will keep you updated on any new developments. For further information on the legal impact of COVID-19 throughout the world please refer to our resources here, or call and email your usual CMS contact or local CMS experts: Dimitar Zwiatkow and Ivan Gergov.