TBC Bank One Step Closer To Full Uzbekistan Banking Licence

(Alliance News) - Georgian lender TBC Bank Group PLC said Tuesday it has obtained a preliminary ...

Alliance News 21 January, 2020 | 2:32PM
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(Alliance News) - Georgian lender TBC Bank Group PLC said Tuesday it has obtained a preliminary banking licence in Uzbekistan.

TBC said this approval is an "essential step" in the process to launch banking operations in the country.

"Obtaining a banking licence is a two-step process, wherein the banks are first granted a preliminary licence after which they are expected to meet certain predefined requirements to receive the final licence," TBC explained.

In mid-December, the lender started point-of-sale financing in the country. TBC began offering customers financing for purchase of consumer products, primarily in the electronics and furniture markets.

In a statement on Tuesday, TBC said: "The Uzbek market is highly attractive, with a population of 33 million growing at around 2.0% per year, increasing market liberalisation and a retail loans to GDP ratio of only 6.0% at the end of 2018."

For the venture, TBC is seeking international financial partners and a domestic partner. TBC hopes to control 51% of the eventual partnership.

"We have already secured interest from the European Bank for Reconstruction & Development and International Finance Corp and have reached an agreement on the main terms with the Uzbek-Oman Investment Co to act as our local partner. The total amount of the initial investment from all the shareholders will be USD40 million," TBC said.

TBC expects to obtain the final licence and start banking operations in summer 2020.

Chief Executive Vakhtang Butskhrikidze said: "This is a very significant milestone and brings us closer to the launch of our banking operations in the Uzbek market. We are very excited about this journey, which is a critical part of our international expansion strategy. I want to take the opportunity to thank the Uzbek authorities for their trust and express deep gratitude to our team working on the Uzbek project for their outstanding effort and diligence."

Shares in TBC Bank were down 0.3% in London on Tuesday afternoon at 1,262.00 pence each.

By Paul McGowan; paulmcgowan@alliancenews.com

Copyright 2020 Alliance News Limited. All Rights Reserved.

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Securities Mentioned in Article

Security Name Price Change (%) Morningstar
TBC Bank Group PLC 1,346.00 GBX 0.75 -

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