LJUBLJANA Jan 10 Slovenian bank loans to
corporations and non-financial institutions fell by 11 percent
year on year in November, the government's macroeconomic
institute said on Tuesday.
It added banks increased the amount of loans to households
by 2.5 percent in the same period while loans to the state were
up by 0.2 percent.
Slovenian bank lending has been falling for years after the
country in 2013 narrowly avoided an international bailout for
its lenders. That year the previous government had to pour more
than 3 billion euros into local banks to prevent them from
collapsing because of bad loans.
"The cost of borrowing at Slovenian banks is less favourable
than in (the rest of) the euro zone. As a consequence clients
are seeking alternative financial resources. Corporations are
increasing short-term debt abroad," the institute said in its
Lending continues to fall although banks reduced the
percentage of bad loans to 6.4 percent of all loans in
September. The country returned to growth in 2014 and expects
its economy to expand by 2.9 percent this year.
Some of the biggest Slovenian banks are still state-owned so
the government controls about 45 percent of the banking sector.
A number of foreign banks are also present in the country,
including France's Societe Generale, Italy's Unicredit
and Intesa Sanpaolo, Russia's Sberbank
and Austria's Sparkasse and Addiko Bank.
(Reporting by Marja Novak; Editing by Alexandra Hudson)