The head of Alfa Bank spoke about the difficulties of the struggle with Sberbank

The largest Russian state bank has reformatted the Russian banking market into a monopoly one, the chairman of the board of Alfa Bank Andrei Sokolov complained. In a few years, the situation will be even worse for private banks.
Origin source
The share of Sberbank in all segments of the Russian banking market is so great that it actually forms a market situation, and it is "quite difficult to compete with it," said Andrei Sokolov, speaking at the meeting of the board of the Presidium of the Association of Banks of Russia, Alfa Bank's presidency, Interfax.

"We live with this, we fight, but if the situation continues like this, we will probably come to a worse situation than now," Sokolov said.

According to the head of Alfa-Bank, the Russian banking market is a "monolayer market." The situation, when one or two players dictate the conditions on the market, Sokolov considers dangerous.

"Our universal competitor in all spheres is Sberbank. We compete with him in the struggle for the client, we compete with him in the fight for credits and new technologies. And it's quite difficult for us, because Sberbank has 50% of the market, "Alfa-Bank said.

According to the Central Bank, the share of Sberbank in the segment of lending to natural persons in the overwhelming number of subjects of the Federation (in almost 70 regions) ranges from 40 to 60%. Even more Sberbank dominates in attracting people's funds - in this market, its share is 60-80% in more than half of the subjects. Almost in all regions (82 out of 85) the bank is included in the list of leaders in lending to legal entities, and in lending to individual entrepreneurs - at 83.

In banks with state participation in general, the market share is often even higher. According to Anatoly Aksakov, chairman of the board of the Association of Banks of Russia, head of the State Duma Financial Market Committee, in 22 regions of Russia it is now 90% or more.

The president of the Association of Banks of Russia, Georgy Luntovsky, at a meeting on Thursday recalled that the total share of banks with state participation in the market for private individuals is now about 70%, in the market of servicing of legal entities - 73%. In the long term, the share of state-owned banks, according to Luntovsky, can still grow, as private banks, including regional banks, continue to revoke licenses.

Luntovsky said that the poll conducted by the association he conducted showed that the struggle for a quality client is exacerbating in the market. In this situation, the one who has access to cheaper resources wins, stressed Luntovsky.

In turn, the first deputy chairman of the Central Bank Sergey Shvetsov noted that the increase in the state's share in the banking sector did not result from a purposeful policy, but largely to ensure financial stability and the efficiency of the banking sector. According to him, even with a large share of the state in the banking sector, there are opportunities for improving the competitive environment.

Shvetsov believes that Sberbank does not have privileges and does not abuse its dominant position, but, on the contrary, sets benchmarks for others.

"Sberbank is an effective monopoly. Yes, the competitive position of "Sberbank" creates fewer opportunities for other participants. But for the market, the activities of Sberbank are positive in the medium-term horizon. In the long term, some steps have been taken with the FAS and we are discussing some measures now, "Shvetsov told journalists (quoted by Interfax).

Shvetsov also recalled that the Central Bank and the Federal Antimonopoly Service prepared a "roadmap" for the development of competition, which the Russian government must approve.