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Cabinet defines new banking sector strategy

On July 4 the Russian cabinet approved a new banking strategy to cover the development of the sector over the next four to five years.

Among other measures, the position of creditors would be improved, in the first instance, collateralized creditors. This measure is likely to refer to a strengthening of mortgage lenders' rights to repossess property in the case of repayment default.

The government also intends to strengthen the legal rights of the central bank in liquidating banks that have had their licences removed, improve competitive mechanisms in the banking sector and simplify bank M&A activity.

An effective credit history system will be created and also a system for registering collateral, so that borrowers cannot pledge the same collateral for loans from different banks.

Better conditions will be established for the wider use of electronic technology in the banking sector and legal mechanisms will be put in place for preventing disreputable individuals from gaining control of credit institutions ? this refers to the concept of fit and proper bank ownership.

The taxation of banking activities will be reformed to lighten the tax burden on banks and the norms of banking legislation relating to the position of foreign banks in the banking sector will be refined.

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