Gent Sejko expected to get consensual vote as new central bank governor

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times February 3, 2015 09:38

Gent Sejko expected to get consensual vote as new central bank governor

TIRANA, Feb. 3 – Gent Sejko is expected to be voted as the new governor of the country’s central bank, replacing Ardian Fullani who was sacked last September after a Euro 5 million theft scandal.

Sejko, 45, is an experienced banker nominated by President Bujar Nishani and will head the country’s central bank for the next seven years with an option to be re-elected for a second term.

Speaking this week in a hearing with the Parliamentary economy committee before an expected consensual vote in Parliament on Thursday, Sejko pledged to continue the Bank of Albania easier monetary policy in consultation with partner international financial institutions.

“I think that even though the key interest rate has been cut to a historic low, there is still space and it should be assessed in cooperation with the IMF whether other means could be employed such as the quantitative easing or the injection of liquidity into the market which would be a new element on the Albanian market,” said Sejko.

The new governor hopes the European Central Bank’s massive quantitative easing boost for the eurozone will also have an impact on Albania’s commercial banks, the overwhelming majority of which are EU subsidiaries.

“We hope mother-banks will increase interest on lending in Albania,” said Sejko.

In an earlier hearing, Sejko stressed the need to focus on management to prevent incidents like the recent theft which led to the dismissal of the former governor Ardian Fullani. “The biggest attention goes to the monetary policy and supervision but management is very important to prevent incidents in the treasury,” said Sejko.

Late last December, Sejko was unanimously approved as a member of the bank’s supervisory council, paving the way to his voting by Parliament as the new governor.

His candidacy by President Bujar Nishani was initially not enthusiastically received by the ruling majority who was seeking to nominate a high-profile international figure, including a foreign banker.

Sejko, 45, a banker with 20 years of experience in the country’s banking system, previously served as a deputy director of the Albanian subsidiary of France’s Societe Generale.

This is a web update.  Read more on this and other topics in our upcoming Friday print edition.

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times February 3, 2015 09:38