In Romania, the credits taken by the population were on the rise in Q1, reaching 18.1% of GDP, 1% more than in Dec. 2007.
Data from Romania’s Central Bank (BNR) say that in end March, the balance of the crediting to the population had reached 76.54 billion RON (or 20.5 billion euros).
Consumer credits amounted to 1.5 billion euros in Q1. They accounted for 14.3% of GDP this March, up 0.7% from the end of last year, read calculations made by Ziarul Financiar daily, based on data from the Central Bank and the National Institute of Statistics.
Mortgage and real estate crediting accounts for only 21% of the credits to the population, consumer credits represent the highest percentage. The daily writes that the Central Bank’s statistics offer a distorted image, because mortgage credits are considered consumer credits.
Credits taken by the population are much below the average in the euro area, where they accounted for 55% of total crediting in end 2006.
Comparisons with mature markets show a very high growth potential for retail crediting, for mortgage crediting firstly. Most bankers connect their development plans with crediting with real guarantees, which has high growth potential, they believe.