Dismissal of Hontareva: Redistribution of Spheres of Influence in Ukraine


Events around the Head of the National Bank heat up and progressively pass to the higher cabinets. Application of the relevant Verkhovna Rada Committee to the President with the demand to dismiss Hontareva because of loss of her business reputation was passed at the meeting of the Financial and Banking Committee of the Parliament by the deputies of all fractions. A strong serve, even stronger than translation of the Washington red “Brochure” into Ukrainian. The ball is now on the President’s side. But he is under no obligation to return it…

Dissatisfaction of the majority of Ukrainian entrepreneurs, bankers and politicians, feeling the mood of electorate – both foreign currency borrowers, and depositors in the national currency, seriously impoverished because of NBU actions in the foreign exchange and supervisory domains, was growing long enough. But, if you ask me, it is not the correct time for attacking the target, based on the experience of unfriendly mergers and acquisitions: long-awaited IMF tranche, albeit not in full, has been received. UAH rate is still rather stable; inflation squeezed by tight monetary policy of the NBU decreased naturally without any targeting before the next inevitable late-autumn turn of the inflation-devaluation tariff spiral.

However, the international financial organizations, main creditors of Ukraine – first of all, IMF and EBRD – are satisfied with cleaning of banking sector of Ukrainian banks. Objectively, “cleaning subdivision” works in favor of PrivatBank, which increases its market share while sending the competitors to the Deposit Guarantee Fund to find their “eternal rest”, and foreigners (not always of purely European origin) still remaining in our market after bank fall. This fall, though, has been much delayed and become permanently sluggish – however, with a threat of the Big Bang… Let the phantom of nationalization of “Position number One” better remains a phantom of a series of apocalyptic, but unrealizable expert scenarios.

In my opinion, contradictions do not lie in the surname of the NBU head, her professionalism /unprofessionalism in the matters of monetary policy or subjectivism of bank supervision approaches – what banks will stay alive, and what banks will die. Such contradictions should be sought deeper – in setting of the goal of redistribution of both local banking market and further (in 2017) the insurance market, and usage of the NBU as a lever in the framework of the wider redistribution of influence in crisis across the economy of Ukraine between new and old players. Always look for an answer to the sacramental question “Who stands to gain?”. And that is the person who really gains…


Yuriy Prozorov




About us