Risks and Returns: Managing Financial Trade-Offs for Inclusive Growth in Europe and Central Asia
This Report argues for reaching beyond increasing access to credit. Countries within Europe and Central Asia (ECA) must build integrated financial systems, enabling prudent inclusion in a region significantly lagging in the use of saving products. Striking the right balance across all dimensions of financial development (stability, efficiency, inclusion, and overall depth) is crucial for achieving and sustaining inclusive growth.
ECA Financial Systems Remain Vulnerable to Financial Shocks: As credit dependence of the economy increases, the effect of the booms and busts on the economy increases, too.
To date, ECA’s financial systems are only slowly recovering from the 2008 crisis, when financial deepening halted as the growth in both credit and GDP collapsed with an unclear path forward and urgent need for reform.