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Foreign bank participation in developing countries : what do we know about the drivers and consequences of this phenomenon?

  • Cull, Robert
  • Soledad Martinez Peria, Maria

Foreign bank participation has increased steadily across developing countries since the mid-1990s. This paper documents this trend and surveys the existing literature to explore the drivers and consequences of this phenomenon, paying particular attention to the differences observed across regions both in the degree of foreign bank participation and in the impact of this process. Local profit opportunities, the absence of barriers to entry, and the presence of mechanisms to mitigate information problems have been the main factors driving foreign bank entry across developing countries. In general, foreign bank participation has been shown to exert a positive influence on banking sector efficiency and competition. The weight of the evidence suggests that foreign bank presence does not endanger, but rather enhances banking sector stability. And although some case studies suggest that foreign bank entry limits access to finance, many cross-country studies offer evidence to the contrary.

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Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 5398.

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Date of creation: 01 Aug 2010
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Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:5398
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  1. Demirguc, Asli & Huizinga, Harry, 1999. "Determinants of Commercial Bank Interest Margins and Profitability: Some International Evidence," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 13(2), pages 379-408, May.
  2. De Haas, Ralph & Naaborg, Ilko, 2006. "Foreign banks in transition countries. To whom do they lend and how are they financed?," MPRA Paper 6320, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  3. H. Semih Yildirim & George Philippatos, 2007. "Efficiency of Banks: Recent Evidence from the Transition Economies of Europe, 1993-2000," The European Journal of Finance, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 13(2), pages 123-143.
  4. Eduardo Levy Yeyati & Alejandro Micco, 2003. "Concentration and Foreign Penetration in Latin American Banking Sectors: Impact on Competition and Risk," Research Department Publications 4353, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
  5. Hsiu-Ling Wu & Chien-Hsun Chen & Mei-Hsuan Lin, 2007. "The Effect of Foreign Bank Entry on the Operational Performance of Commercial Banks in the Chinese Transitional Economy," Post-Communist Economies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(3), pages 343-357.
  6. de la Torre, Augusto & Soledad Martinez Peria, Maria & Schmukler , Sergio L., 2008. "Bank involvement with SMEs : beyond relationship lending," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4649, The World Bank.
  7. Ralph de Haas & Iman van Lelyveld, 2003. "Foreign Banks and Credit Stability in Central and Eastern Europe: A Panel Data Analysis," DNB Staff Reports (discontinued) 109, Netherlands Central Bank.
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