Review of monetary sector in Azerbaijan (January 2014)

Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev signed a law on tax exemption of interest income on the population's deposits in banks and other credit organizations until 2015.

The law has entered into force since January 2014.

It is assumed that this law will keep approximately 50-60 million manat for the population. The decision aims to support the country's banking system. The tax benefits in respect of dividends on deposits paid by the banks and other credit organizations for the population were introduced in 1999.

A ten-percent tax from the source is applied for these revenues.

The Central Bank of Azerbaijan stressed that its foreign reserves continue growing in 2014.
So, as of February 1, the volume of the bank's currency reserves totaled $14.2 billion (an absolute record) compared to $14.15 billion as of early 2014. The reserves increased by 0.47 percent ($67.3 million) in January. As of 2014, foreign exchange reserves must hit up to $ 16 billion.

The international reserves of the Central Bank of Azerbaijan exceeded $ 15 billion by February 1, 2014. So, the international reserves consist of foreign currency ( $ 14.787 billion ) , special borrowing (SDR 237.91 million) and a reserve position in the IMF (SDR 0.198 million).

For comparison, the international reserves of the Central Bank did not reach $ 15 billion, by forming from foreign currency ($ 14.404.9 billion), special borrowing (SDR 238.29 million) and a reserve position in the IMF (SDR 0.188 million) in early 2014.

Currency market and manat rate

The manat rate has showed its stability compared to the U.S. dollar since early 2014. The manat rate compared to the U.S. dollar appreciated by 0.04 percent in January 2014, amounting to 0.7842 manat per dollar as of January 31.

The manat rate also appreciated compared to the euro in January 2014. Thus, in January the euro dropped from 1.0691 manat to 1.0625 manat per euro. However, it should be stressed that EUR / AZN exchange rate was characterized by strong volatility of dynamics compared to the dollar.

Foreign exchange market

The total trading volume in the currency section on USD / AZN totaled 21.350 million manat or $27.225 million in Bourse E-System of Trades (BEST) at Baku Interbank Currency Exchange (BBVB) in January.

Nine banks held 15 transactions at 36 trading sessions in Bourse E-System of Trades (BEST).

The trading volume in the currency section increased by 13.145 million manat or 1.6 times in January 2014 compared to December.

The average daily turnover in the exchange electronic trading system on USD / AZN in January reached about $1.513 million, while the average amount of each transaction was $1.815 million.

The exchange rate of national currency on USD / AZN_TOD in the reporting month increased by 0.06 percent from 0.7835 manat to 0.7830 manat per USD. The average rate of the U.S. dollar compared to manat hit 0.7842 manat per $1 in January 2014.

The average monthly interest rate calculated on the basis of the applications of banks-market makers for BakIBOR loans up to 90 days in January amounted to 9.87 percent per annum in manat and 10.32 percent per annum in U.S. dollars. The rate on BakIBID up to 90 days was 4.79 percent per annum in manat and 4.70 percent in U.S. dollars.

Azerbaijani monetary market

The Central Bank's important objective is to manage the money supply at an adequate macroeconomic and financial stability level, in terms of continuous growth of foreign exchange reserves of the country and increased liquidity of the banking system.

As of January 2014, money supply (M2) (cash in circulation (outside banks) and remainders in the domestic currency on accounts of non-financial organizations, financial (excluding credit) organizations and physical entities) increased by 20.3 percent compared to the same period of 2013.

According to the Central Bank of Azerbaijan (CBA), as of January 2014, the rate of M2 was 15.982.9 billion manat compared to 13.288 billion manat in January 2013.

The amount of cash money supply (M0) increased by 12.41 percent and amounted to 9.911.7 billion manat compared to 8.817.6 billion manat in January 2013.

As of January 2014, Broad Money Supply (M3) totaled 19.110.2 billion manat or 19.42 percent more compared to January 2013 (16.002.2 billion manat).

The transaction money (M1) increased by 16.4 percent per year and amounted to 12.277.3 billion manat compared to 10.548.4 billion manat in January 2013.

Parameters of monetary market, in million manat:

Amount as of Feb. 1, 2014

Money mass in extensive understating (М3)

19110,2

Money mass on manat (М2)

15982,9

Cash in manat (М0)

9911,7

Non-cash in manat

6071,2

The expanded monetary base in the country amounted to 11.142.6 billion manat.

The monetary base increased by 12.1 percent per annum, according to the Central Bank of Azerbaijan (CBA). For comparison, this figure amounted to 9.938.5 billion manat as of January 2013.

As of February 1, 2014, the monetary base in manat amounted to 11.038.1 billion manat compared to 9.842.8 billion manat as of February 1, 2013, according to the CBA.

During the reporting period the volume of money in circulation amounted to 10.530.2 billion manat, while as of February 1, 2013, this figure was 9.360.6 billion manat.

The ratio of cash money mass in circulation to the monetary base amounted to 94.5 percent as of February 1, 2014 compared to 94.2 percent as of February 1, 2013.

In turn, bank reserves were equal to 598.4 million manat which is 6.25 percent more than in January 2013 (563.2 million manat).

Azerbaijan's loan market

The Central Bank of Azerbaijan urged the country's banks to tighten control over consumer loans in January 2014. The Central Bank urged the banks to intensify the work in the field of loan issuance and to improve control in this area to strengthen the financial stability of the banking sector and in accordance with the responsible lending principles.

According to the requirements of the CBA rules on loan issuance in the banks, the unsecured loans must be given in case of the long-term financial reports and credit histories of borrowers. A reference about the salary or income from other sources is among the necessary financial reports for physical entities. It should be stressed that unsecured loans are also considered credit products that require thorough assessment and underwriting in the international practice.

Moreover, the CBA continues taking the measures to protect the rights and to improve the financial literacy of consumers. In this regard, the Central Bank toughened the requirements for the banks to provide consumers with reliable and complete information on the terms of credit products, according to the report.

Azerbaijani banks increased lending to the economy by 24.5 percent in January 2014.

The banks delivered loans totaling 15.536.3 billion manat including 11.140.5 billion manat (71.71 percent) in national currency and 4.395.7 billion manat (28.29 percent) in freely convertible currency for the reporting period, according to the Azerbaijani Central Bank.

For comparison, the figure was equal to 12.479.3 billion manat (8.580.6 billion manat in national currency and 3.898.7 billion manat in freely convertible currency) in January 2013.

Of the total portfolio, loans worth 815.1 million manat (5.25 percent) were overdue compared to 763.8 million manat as of January 2013. Statistics of overdue loans does not include similar loans of the non-banking credit institution Aqrarkredit. Overdue loans increased by 6.72 percent per year.

Short term loans amounted to 3.368.5 billion manat including overdue loans worth 372.3 million manat compared to 3.597.5 billion manat including overdue loans worth 391.1 million manat as of January 2013. The volume of short term loans in the economy decreased by 6.37 percent per year.

As of January 2014, the volume of long term loans amounted to 12.167.7 billion manat including 442.8 million manat in overdue loans compared to 8.881.7 billion manat including 372.8 million manat of overdue loans as of 2013. The long term loans increased by 37 percent per year.

The credit portfolio of the only state bank in the country, the International Bank of Azerbaijan, hit 5.272 billion manat with a specific weight of 33.9 percent, while private banks issued loans worth 9.750.1 billion manat with a specific weight of 62.8 percent. The remaining 3.3 percent fell to the share of non-bank credit organizations. They issued 514.2 million manat, according to the CBA.

Most of all loans are granted to households in Azerbaijan. As of January 2014, households received 40.9 percent or 6.358.9 billion manat, according to the CBA.

The trade and service sector (14.2 percent or 2.211.4 billion manat) ranks second, the construction and real estate sector (12.9 percent or 1.997.3 billion manat) ranks third.

The industrial and production sector received 11.9 percent of the total lending amount of the Azerbaijani real sector, which hits 1.841.3 billion manat in nominal terms.

It should be stressed that this sector obtained a great volume of lending in connection with the announcement of 2014 as the Year of Industry.

For comparison, as of 2013, the industrial sector received only 9.8 percent of the total volume of loans in the country's economy.

Some 3.3 percent (514.7 million manat) fall to the transport and communication, 4.7 percent (733.1 million manat) - agriculture and processing, 1.8 percent (285.5 million manat) - energy, chemistry, and natural resources, 10.3 percent or 1.600.24 billion manat loans - on the other spheres.

The loans, delivered to the population in Azerbaijan's regions, amounted to 2.213.06 billion manat in January 2014, or 14.24 percent of the total loan portfolio of banks.

In Baku this figure amounted to 13.323.2 billion manat, where the loans in the national currency accounted for 9.345.05 billion manat. As of January 2014, the average interest rate on loans in the country was 14.3 percent, and in Baku - 13.3 percent, according to the CBA.

The crediting volume in Absheron economic region amounted to 456.6 million manat at an average rate of 18.7 percent, in Aran - 766.2 million manat at a rate of 20.8 percent, in Mountain-Shirvan - 87.1 million manat at a rate of 23.6 percent, in Ganja - Gazakh - 294.14 million manat - 22 percent, in Guba-Khachmaz - 88 million manat - 21.9 percent, in Lankaran - 230.8 million manat - 21.6 percent, in Sheki-Zagatala - 122.4 million manat - 20.4 percent, in Upper Karabakh - 52.8 million manat - 18.2 percent, in Kalbajar-Lachin - 20 million manat - 24.1 percent, in Nakhchivan - 95.1 million manat - 16.2 percent.

As of February 1, 2014, the Azerbaijani banks reduced interest rates on loans in local and foreign currencies compared to February 1, 2013.

The average rate on bank lending to the economy in national currency totaled 14.16 percent, compared to 15.35 percent as of February 1, 2013, according to a statistical report from the Central Bank of Azerbaijan (CBA).

The average rate on bank lending in freely convertible currency was 14.65 percent compared to 15.51 percent in early February 2013.

As of February 1, 2014, the average rate on bank lending to legal entities in national currency amounted to 10.98 percent compared to 13.32 percent as of February 1, 2013.

The average rate on bank lending of corporate clients in freely convertible currency was 10.52 percent compared to 12.75 percent in early February 2013.

As of February 1, 2014, the average rate on bank lending to physical entities in national currency was 17.99 percent compared to 18.53 percent as of early February 1, 2013.

The average rate on bank loans to individual customers in freely convertible currency was 20.82 percent compared to 21.87 percent in early February 2013.

Mortgage lending

The mortgage lending increased by 19 percent in the country in January 2014. According to the CBA, mortgage loans worth 2.5 million manat were issued in Azerbaijan in January compared to 2.1 million manat in January 2013. The best monthly rate of lending was registered in May (17.4 million manat) last year and throughout the history.

The Azerbaijan Mortgage Fund (AMF), acting under the CBA, refinanced mortgage loans worth 9.9 million manat in January compared to 2.7 million manat a year earlier. An absolute record in refinancing was registered in December 2013 - 26.9 million manat.

A third of housing purchased on the basis of mortgage accounts for the regions of Azerbaijan. According to the CBA report, some 430.9 million manat have been drawn to finance 13,600 loans issued through the Mortgage Fund since its establishment.

In particular, some 1,131 loans (8.31 percent of a total number) were issued in Sumgait, 453 loans (3.33 percent) in the Absheron, some 391 loans (2.87 percent) in Ganja and so on.

About two-thirds of the total number of apartments purchased on the basis of mortgage through the fund (64.3 percent) fall to the housing worth from 30,000 to 60,000 manat. Some 27.1 percent fall to the apartments worth from 60,000 to 90,000 manat, 3.9 percent - housing cheaper than 30,000 manat, 3.2 percent - housing worth from 90,000 to 120,000 manat, 1.6 percent - flats worth more than 120,000 manat.

Currently, the maximum amount of a common mortgage loan through the AMF is 50,000 manat at a rate of eight per cent with a payback period of 25 years. Terms under the social mortgage are 50,000 manat at an annual rate of four percent with a payback period of 30 years. The initial payment under the social mortgage is 15 percent, whilst the conventional loan is 20 percent.

Conditions of mortgage lending are as follows. Loans must be issued in Azerbaijani manats and only to Azerbaijani citizens and the mortgage can only be for an apartment or private house. The volume of mortgage lending must not exceed 80 percent of the market price and the monthly payment must not exceed 70 percent of the debtor's monthly income. It is compulsory to take out an agreement on life insurance.

Preferential conditions are granted to family members of war victims, national heroes, internally displaced persons, civil servants with at least a three years' experience, PhDs and those making special contributions to sport as well as to the military with at least a three-year service term. Each family having the right to such a mortgage can only use the opportunity once.

There are 31 authorized banks belonging to the Mortgage Fund. Around 21 insurance companies and 11 appraisal organizations are participants in the mortgage market.

Azerbaijan's banking sector

As of January 2014, the depositary base of Azerbaijani banks increased by 22.45 percent, the Azerbaijani Central Bank's (CBA) statistics report said.

As of February 1, 2014, the total amount of bank deposits and deposits of physical and legal entities totalled 12.683 billion manat, compared to 10.357.6 billion manat as of early February 2013, according to the CBA.

Around 6.501.6 billion manat fell to cash in manats, of which 2.406.3 billion manat were demand deposits and 4.095.3 billion manat - term deposits. The funds in foreign currency amounted to 6.181.4 billion manat (1.480.4 billion manat and 4.701 billion manat, respectively).

The deposits of physical entities increased by 21.4 percent, while the volume of legal entities' deposits by 23.6 percent compared to January 2013.

As of January 2014, the volume of physical entities deposits in the banks amounted 6.451.4 billion manat compared to 5.315.4 billion manat in January 2013.

Around 3.929.8 billion manat (60.9 percent) of the population's funds were placed in the national currency, the manat, while 2.521.6 billion manat in freely convertible currency, according to the Central Bank.

The Azerbaijani population's deposits in the national currency in the banks have prevailed over those in foreign currency since 2012.

As of January 2014, the volume of deposits of financial institutions amounted to 3.383.4 billion manat compared to 2.636 billion manat as of January 2013.

The volume of deposits of non-financial institutions totalled 2.848.2 billion manat compared to 2.406.2 billion manat as of January 2013.

The total deposits of legal entities totalled 6.231.6 billion manat compared to 5.042.2 billion manat as of January 2013.

As of February 1, 2014, Azerbaijani banks slightly reduced the rate on deposits in manat and in freely convertible currency, according to a statistics report of the Central Bank of Azerbaijan (CBA).

The average rate on deposits in manat as of February 1, 2014 was 9.42 percent compared to 9.88 percent as of February 1, 2013. The average rate on deposits in foreign currency amounted to 9.66 percent compared to 10.35 percent as of early February 2013, according to the report.

As of February 1, 2014, the average rate on physical entities' deposits in manat was 9.8 percent compared to 10.22 percent as of February 1, 2013. The average rate on individual clients' deposits in foreign currency amounted to 10.19 percent compared to 10.71 percent as of early February 2013.

As of early February 2014, the average rate on legal entities' deposits in manat was 5.59 percent compared to 6.64 percent as of February 1, 2013, according to the report.

The average rate on corporate clients' deposits in foreign currency was 3.35 percent compared to 4.48 percent as of early February 2013.

Banks' financial activity

The Azerbaijani Central Bank (CBA) exceeded the total profits of lucrative banks over the total loss of unprofitable banks by 18.22 times as of January, 2014.

The profit of 38 banks was 51.92 million manat, while the loss of five banks stood at 2.85 million manat, according to the report. This allowed the banking system to earn 49.07 million manat of net profit.

The number of profitable banks increased by three in January, 2014, while the total profit of the sector increased by 51.9 percent compared to previous month of 2013. The number of unprofitable banks decreased from eight to five and the total loss reduced by 1.7 times.

The maximum level of total profits of the banking system obtained by the results of activities of 38 banks was recorded in November 2013 to the sum of 346.89 million manat. The maximum amount of net profit at the level of 334.16 million manat was gained in the same month.

Financial results of the banks' activity (after paying taxes) in million manat

Period

Number of profitable banks

The total profit of the banking system (profitable banks)

Number of unprofitable banks

The total loss of the banking system (unprofitable banks)

Total profit (+) or loss (-) obtained by banks

01.02.2013

35

34,19

8

-4,93

29,26

01.02.2014

38

51,92

5

- 2,85

49,07

The capitalization of Azerbaijan's banking sector increased by 34.9 percent in January 2014 compared to January 2013 and amounted to 3.44 billion manat as of February 1, 2014.

There were 41 banks with the capital worth over 10 million manat as of the reporting period, according to the Central Bank of Azerbaijan's statistics report. This did not change compared to late January 2013.

The specific weight of this category in the total volume of capital of all the country's banks amounted to 99.8 percent as of the reporting period.

There were no banks with the capital ranging from five million manat to ten million manat in January 2014 as in January 2013.

There were two banks with capital ranging from 3.5 million manat to five million manat as of the reporting period. The specific weight of this category in the total volume of capital of the country's all banks amounted to 0.2 percent as of the reporting period.

The Central Bank's requirement for the minimum amount of total capital of banks is set at 50 million manat by late 2014.

As of February 1, 2014, the assets of the Azerbaijani banking sector amounted to 20.546.35 billion manat compared to 16.419.05 billion manat in January 2013.

The bank assets increased by 25.14 percent per year, according to the Central Bank of Azerbaijan's report.

The basis of the assets of the banking sector (69.2 percent) accounted for loans delivered to the clients to the sum of 14.210.5 billion manat (31.5 percent growth per year), investments (1.704.6 billion manat with 6.5 percent growth) and funds on correspondent accounts (1.072.4 billion manat with 4.5 percent growth).

Loans and deposits to the financial sector amounted to 890.7 million manat with a growth of 25.43 percent. The lion share in the structure of liabilities accounts for deposits standing at 9.158.9 billion manat (44.58 percent) as of February 1, 2014, showing an increase of 20.7 percent compared to January 2013. Loans and deposits from the financial sector amounted to 6.833.1 billion manat, increasing by 30.8 percent.

Payment card market

The number of payment cards in Azerbaijan slightly increased by 1.4 percent to 5.752 million in January 2014 compared to December 2013.

Some 2,534 of the total number of cards fell to the social cards, 1,432 - salary cards, 819,000 - other cards. The number of credit cards was 967,000 units.

The total turnover on payment cards via ATMs and POS-terminals amounted to 778 million manat and the total number of transactions to 5.534 million units in January, according to the report.

The number of transactions on debit cards equalled 5,282 units to the amount of 610 million manat.

Around 3,390 transactions amounting to 549 million manat of the total number of transactions on debit cards were implemented via ATMs within the country and around 614,000 transactions amounting to 41 million manat via POS-terminals.

Some 1,252 transactions worth 167 million manat were implemented on credit cards in January 2014.

As many as 355,000 transactions amounting to 78 million manat of the total number of transactions on credit cards were implemented via ATMs and there were 670,000 transactions amounting to 40 million manat via POS-terminals.

As of February 1, 2014, around 2,417 ATMs operated in the country of which 1,358 are located in Baku and 1,059 in other cities and regions of the country. Their total number increased by 156 units or 6.9 percent per year.

The number of POS-terminals amounted to 33,045 units of which 27,733 are installed in Baku and 5,312 units in other cities and regions as of February 1, 2014.

The number of POS-terminals decreased by 2,730 units or by 11.1 percent compared to January 2013.

Stock market

The total turnover of transactions on all instruments on the Baku Stock Exchange (BSE) in January 2014 totaled 1.483 billion manat, or by 11.12 times more compared to January 2013.

Such an increase in the country's stock market caused by an increase in the state securities market by 917.14 percent, while the corporate securities market increased by 1703.88 percent.

The volume of the state securities market hit 1.18 billion manat in January and the turnover of corporate securities market hit 303.23 million manat.

Comparative table on the results of trades on corporate sector at BSE (January 2014):

Market segments

Jan. 31, 2014

Jan. 31, 2013

Percentage ratio

Volume of transactions. (manat)

Number of deals

Volume of transactions. (manat)

Number of deals

Corporate bonds- (placement)

22 454 610.00

7

8 414 500.00

4

266.86%

Corporate bonds - (secondary market)

173 843 492.13

34

7 630 682.51

11

2278.22%

Stocks - (placement)

106 704 390.52

105

1 500 000.00

5

7113.63%

Stocks -(secondary market)

223 592.09

278

251 601.04

322

88.87%

CS Market Total

303 226 084.74

424

17 796 783.55

342

1703.83%

Comparative table on the results of trades on state sector at BSE (January 2014):

Market segments

Jan.31, 2014

Jan. 31,2013

Percentage ratio

Volume of transactions (manat)

Number of deals

Volume of transactions (manat)

Number of deals

GB - (AR MF) (placement)

0.00

0

0.00

0

-

GB - (AR MF) (secondary market)

4 500 000.00

3

0.00

0

-

Notes (AR CB) - (placement)

24 982 415.48

8

39 947 772.90

13

62.54%

Notes (AR CB) - (secondary market)

0.00

0

39 949 480.00

3

0.00%

Repo operations

1 150 446 378.09

86

48 755 781.81

6

2359.61%

CS Market Total

1 179 928 793.57

97

128 653 034.71

22

917.14%

Abbreviations:

- GB - government bonds,
- GS - government securities,
- CB - corporate bonds

- CSC- corporate securities

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