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Dutch banks are resilient but need to step up their ambitions

Press release

Dutch banks are financially resilient, thanks in part to increased interest rates. This gives them the room to step up their ambitions in terms of digitalisation, sustainability and the fight against money laundering. At the same time, fiercer competition through digitalisation, greater volatility of savings deposits, and a potential deterioration of the risk picture could turn tailwinds into headwinds. It is therefore important that banks continue to chart their course in a well-founded and responsible manner, always mindful of society's expectations of their role.

Published: 28 November 2023

Twee werknemers van een zonnepanelenfabriek in Nederland.

Steven Maijoor, our Executive Board Member of Supervision, said this today at a press meeting this morning marking the presentation of a new DNB study on the state of the Dutch banking sector, entitled “Banks today: navigating a new reality – Opportunities and challenges in times of higher interest rates, the digital transformation and the transition to a sustainable economy”.

At the meeting, Chair of Prudential Supervision and Executive Board Member Else Bos also presented our annual publication “Supervision in focus 2023 - 2024” (Dutch). In it, we discuss the past year’s achievements and outline our expectations of the year ahead in terms of our supervision priorities – technological development, sustainability and financial crime.

A new pension system

In Supervision in focus, we note that the implementation of the new pension system will play a key role in our supervision in the coming years. For example, we will review bridging plans, make operational preparations for the transition and the assess of the first pension scheme conversion decisions. We expect to receive dozens of bridging plans for review in 2024. In addition, the first pension funds are finalising their decision-making and have indicated their intention to convert their pension schemes by 1 January 2025. We currently estimate is that most of the conversion decisions will be submitted for our assessment in 2025 and 2026.

More stringent risk management

In the new banking sector study, we note that Dutch banks are at the forefront in the digital transformation, but leveraging the opportunities this brings requires managing cyber risks and safeguarding customer privacy. Similarly, wide access to banking services must be ensured, given the challenge for banks to continue serving a large group of customers who have difficulty with digital banking and payments. At the same time, digitalisation is contributing to the greater volatility of savings deposits. Together with the interest rate sensitivity of savers and heightened interest rate risks in loan portfolios, this necessitates more stringent risk management.

End of press release

For more information, please contact Tobias Oudejans at +31 6 524 96 961.

DNB-study 'Banking today: navigating a new reality'

Download DNB-study 'Banking today: navigating a new reality'

Supervision in focus 2023 – 2024 (only in Dutch)

Download Supervision in focus 2023 – 2024 (only in Dutch)

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