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Foreign banks in Bulgaria, 1875-2002


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  • Kenneth Koford


  • Adrian E. Tschoegl



We use the analogy of ecological succession as our conceptual framework. We apply this analogy to the history of foreign banks in Bulgaria and argue that the current predominance of foreign banks is unlikely to be permanent, even without government action. Foreign banks have entered Bulgaria several times—before World War I, again after that war, and after the fall of Communism in the early 1990s. The same source countries and even some of the same banks that were present before World War II or even World War I, reappear in the 1990s. Government concern with retaining control over credit limited the foreigners’ role in the banking system. However, since 1997 the government has privatized almost all the major banks with the result that foreign banks now control over 80 per cent of the banking system’s assets.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan in its series William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series with number 537.

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Length: 47 pages
Date of creation: 01 Jan 2003
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wdi:papers:2003-537

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Keywords: International-banking; Bulgaria; Foreign-Banks; transition; succession;

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Cited by:
  1. Adrian E. Tschoegl, 2004. "Financial Crises and the Presence of Foreign Banks," International Finance 0405016, EconWPA.
  2. Kiril Tochkov & Nikolay Nenovsk, 2010. "Institutional Reforms, EU Accession, and Bank Efficiency: Evidence from Bulgaria," Working Papers 201005, Texas Christian University, Department of Economics.


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