Tiny 2% use online banking in Bulgaria
Only a meagre two percent of Bulgarians use online banking services, thus placing the country at the bottom of the European rankings together with Romania, Greece, Serbia and Turkey.
Only a meagre two percent of Bulgarians use online banking services, thus placing the country at the bottom of the European rankings together with Romania, Greece, Serbia and Turkey. The findings were made public at the Innovations financial forum, which took place in Sofia on 24 June. However, experts highlighted the fact that the two percent share was tiny even against the backdrop of the forty percent of internet users in the country.
The highest percentage of online bank customers in Europe, over 70%, was boasted by Belgium and the Netherlands, and the EU's average stood at 27%.
Therefore, it was not surprising that Bulgaria ranked first in the number of bank branches per capita: 62 per 100,000 people, with only 10 in Norway. Bulgaria and Italy had the highest number of bank subsidiaries, while Germany had 14.
Experts claimed that it will take Bulgaria 10 to 15 years to reach the current percentage of online banking in Scandinavian countries, though given the rapid growth in online services it might be no more than 5 years if trends continue to grow.
Their conclusion is that actual bank branches will become redundant over time. Bankers say that the future belongs to online banking coupled with call centre-provided services. This is particularly true given the ever increasing number of users of social media, which banks consider the newest channel of communication with customers.
The use of online banking depends on security concerns to a great extent. After the recent attack by online hackers, 30% of the customers of Germany's largest bank switched from online banking to banking via call centres, financial experts added.