The Bulgarian National Bank’s official reserve assets rose by 1.5% m/m to EUR24.8bn at end-February, the Bulgarian National Bank (BNB) reported. The reserve assets represented 41.6% of the projected GDP for the year, up from 41.0% of GDP in the previous month. The reserve coverage of imports rose to 9.9 months from 9.8 months in January. The reserve coverage of short-term external debt remained unchanged from the previous month, coverage reaching 3.1 times.
The m/m increase in the international reserve assets matched the 1.5% m/m growth of BNB’s liabilities in the BNB’s balance sheet for the month. This reflected mostly a 7.5% m/m increase in BNB’s liabilities to the government, and to a lesser extent, a slight 0.1% m/m increase in the central bank’s liabilities to banks. Banknotes in circulation also went up by 0.2% m/m.
Pre-determined reserve drains were estimated at EUR553.2m for the next 12 months, while contingent liabilities were calculated at EUR86.6m for the same period.