10 Sep 2010 18:53

Russian banks bar Sberbank up lending 2.3%, deposits 1.4% in August

ST. PETERSBURG. Sept 10 (Interfax) - Russian banks, not including Sberbank , increased their overall loan portfolio 2.3% in August, Mikhail Sukhov, director of the Central Bank's Department for Licensing and Financial Recovery, said.

Sukhov also said deposits with Russian banks, bar Sberbank, rose 1.4% in August.

Sukhov said he supports the idea of having a financial ombudsman. "That would make it possible to increase transparency in relation to clients, Sukhov is quoted as saying in a statement from the Association of Russian Banks.

The ARB announced creation of the ombudsman's office earlier this month, headed by State Duma Deputy Pavel Medvedev. The banks initiated creation of the office. Participating banks agree to comply with the decisions the office makes.

A similar project is underway at a second industry association, the Association of Russian Regional Banks. It drew up a strategy for establishing an ombudsman's office in mid-June jointly with the International Confederation of Associations.

Both bank associations believe such institutions are a step on the road to creating a national out-of-court forum for resolving disputes between the banks and the private individuals that utilize their services.