- BoB attributes the strength of the country’s financial system to strong capital and liquidity buffers, profitability, innovation, adaptability and a robust regulatory environment
The domestic financial system remains robust and resilient because it is supported by effective policy and regulatory frameworks.
This is the conclusion of the Financial Stability Council (FSC) when it met in Gaborone recently to assess the state of Botswana’s financial sector, addressing global and regional developments and potential vulnerabilities.
A statement released by the Bank of Botswana (BoB) after the meeting outlined the criteria for financial stability and emphasised the ability of financial markets and institutions to provide a wide range of services that include deposit-taking, loans, insurance, wealth management, payments, and settlement facilities.
The FSC acknowledged risks arising from global and regional factors, such as high interest rates impacting debt sustainability and economic disruptions due to geopolitical tensions.
Despite these challenges, the FSC expressed confidence in the stability of the global financial system, attributing it to post-2008/09 global financial crisis regulatory reforms and continuous supervisory enhancements.
Domestically, said the statement, Botswana’s financial system’s strength is due to strong capital and liquidity buffers, profitability, innovation, adaptability and a robust regulatory environment.
The FSC highlighted the importance of effective supervision in mitigating contagion risks within the financial system, noting strong solvency and resilience in stress tests for banks.
Regarding credit risk, commercial bank lending was deemed moderate, with a relatively modest ratio of nonperforming loans to total loans, posing minimal risk to financial stability.
Addressing Anti-Money Laundering/Counter Financing of Terrorism/Counter Proliferation Financing (AML/CFT/CPF) matters, the FSC underscored Botswana’s commitment to enhancing legal frameworks and policies to comply with Financial Action Task Force recommendations.
Cybersecurity and legislative reviews
It emphasised the need to stay adaptive to emerging issues such as financial technology, digitalisation, cybersecurity and climate change.
The BoB statement highlighted recent legislative reviews, including the Bank of Botswana Act, the Banking Act, the NBFIRA Act, the Financial Intelligence Agency Act, and the Virtual Assets Act. Notably, the establishment of the Deposit Insurance Scheme of Botswana (DISB) through the Bank of Botswana (Amendment) Act was emphasised for providing a safety net for depositors.
Meanwhile, the FSC has affirmed its commitment to monitoring financial sector developments, responding to threats and contributing to legal, policy, and institutional improvements.
Established by the Bank of Botswana (Amendment) Act 2022, the FSC comprises key members overseeing Botswana’s financial stability.