At the end of October, the National Bank of Belgium also announced its new capital buffers for Belgian systemic banks. For KBC, it means that an additional capital buffer of 0.5% of CET1 (phased in under the Danish compromise) is required for 2016, which is to be built up over three years on a straight-line basis to 1.5% in 2018.
KBC clearly exceeds the new targets set by the ECB (9.75%) and the NBB (0.5% in 2016), i.e. an aggregate 10.25% for 2016. At the close of the third quarter of 2015, the phased-in CET1 ratio came to 17.2%.
A file is currently with the ECB regarding a significant repayment of state aid provided by the Flemish Regional Government. The ECB's decision is still pending and is expected in the weeks ahead.
Johan Thijs, KBC Group CEO, welcomed today’s announcements stating: ‘KBC welcomes the outcome of the ECB decision because it brings clarity for the group and its stakeholders. The capital target of 9.75% (CET1) set by the ECB is fully in line with the target KBC had already set itself and which it currently clearly meets. This sends out a reassuring signal to all stakeholders placing their trust in us.
KBC will continue to focus on its strong fundamentals of a dynamic client-driven bank-insurance business model, a healthy risk profile, a robust liquidity position supported by a very solid and loyal customer deposit base in our core markets, and a comfortable solvency position that enables us to continue to increase lending to our clients and actively support the communities and economies in which we operate.'