Dear Mr. Deputy Prime Minister for EU Funds and Minister of Finance,
Dear Governor of the Bulgarian National Bank,
Dear Ladies and Gentlemen – Deputy Governors and
Members of the Governing Council of the Bulgarian National Bank,
Dear Mr. Chairman of the Financial Supervision Commission,
Dear colleagues and friends from the banking and financial sector,

Dear guests,

Let me welcome you to this exceptional event we are attending this evening, namely – the celebration of the 30th anniversary of the Association of Banks in Bulgaria! 

The Association of Banks is one of the first non-profit branch organizations in Bulgaria. Over the past three decades since its founding, we have witnessed many key changes which will remain in the modern history of the country. At the beginning of its existence, the banking sector faced very different challenges from those we face today. All the obstacles that banks have gone through have made our sector more resilient and able to respond to difficulties, and the Association has always been the single voice of all banking institutions in Bulgaria, regardless of their size, ownership and differences in the nature of their work.

Today, I would not like to talk to you about how successful banks are, how stable and well-capitalized our business is, but instead I would like to focus on things that are not visible to the naked eye and cannot be touched, but one can feel them. Those factors take years to be built, and these are the foundations of good partnerships and relationships, namely trust and responsibility. And this is the greatest capital that we, the banks, have at our disposal – the trust of our customers, first of all, as well as of our partners, that they can count on us, both in the calm times of prosperity and growth, and in the turbulent moments of troubles and difficulties we invariably face. Inevitably, we can most likely expect this to continue in the rapidly changing world of globalization, pandemics, conflicts, climate crises, sustainable economy, digitalization of the financial sector, digital money and other events, which we are expected to respond to cohesively, quickly and effectively.

Over the years, we have worked hard for the word “bank” when heard by people to be a symbol of a stable financial institution that operates under clear and predictable rules. In today’s volatile world, security and predictability are key factors for the well-being of every society, every business, and every one of us.

Over the years we have cooperated extremely successfully with all public institutions in Bulgaria to ensure that we provide banking services under the established rules and at the highest professional level. I am confident that we will continue our excellent work together to ensure stability and meet the needs of customers to the highest degree, so that we continue to preserve not only money but also their trust. These are the principles we have followed in all our years of working together, and I am confident that no matter how much the banking sector changes, as well as the banking of the future, when we meet on our next anniversary, these principles will continue to be respected.

The professionalism, the search for a balanced point of view and a constructive dialogue with all stakeholders have contributed to the ABB proving itself as a predictable and desirable partner of the stakeholders from the financial private and public sector in Bulgaria. I would like to express my conviction that the banking sector will maintain its integrity and stability, and the banking Association will continue to be the voice of its unity. We will continue to meet the challenges of a fast-changing world in an efficient, rapid and coordinated way, as time has shown that together we are much stronger and can achieve much better results.

Dear colleagues,

Allow me on my own behalf, on behalf of the Executive Board of the ABB and the members of the Association to express my great gratitude to the Bulgarian National Bank and its leadership over the years.

We would like to thank all the representatives of the government and the public institutions with whom we have had a good and fruitful partnership over the years. Warm thanks also to the non-governmental organizations, the academic community, the media and other partners, with whom we also have fruitful long-term cooperation. I would like to express my deep gratitude to all the individuals who have the merit of the banking business in Bulgaria being at the level it is today and who have contributed to the positive reputation of our system.

As Chairperson of the ABB, but also personally, I would like to wholeheartedly thank all the people who work in the banking institutions in Bulgaria for the loyalty, endurance and strong creative energy, which creates the image of the banks in Bulgaria.

I would also like to thank the clients, who stimulate us to to beyond our possibilities every day, in order to improve the client’s experience!

I would also like to thank the united small team of the Secretariat of the Association for their dedication and professionalism.

Last but not least, on behalf of the Executive Board of the Association of Banks in Bulgaria and on my own behalf, I would like to extend my warmest wishes to all colleagues for good health and success, both personally and professionally! Everyone present here knows very well that being a banker is not just a profession, but a vocation! And, if Hendrith Vanlon Smith’s statement that “A healthy Banking system is one of the vital parts of a nation’s foundation.” is true, it is you, colleagues, who support one of these fundamentals. Be always guided in your deeds by the responsibility that our profession brings to the full extent to our society!

Happy 30th Anniversary to the ABB!