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Cambridge Central Asia Forum


Cambridge Central Asia Forum in collaboration with Centre of Development Studies and GCRF COMPASS invites you to the launch of the book

'Banking in Central Asia and Mongolia since 1875' by M. Honma


Date: 10 July 2019
Time: 4-7pm
Venue: Room SG1, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DP

Everyone is welcome. Registration is mandatory. Please RSVP by 5th July 2019.

Light refreshments will be served.

You will have the opportunity to buy the book and get it signed by the author!

Books will be available for purchase for half the original price at the launch (£30, Cash only).

About the book: This volume traces the history of banking in Central Asia and Mongolia since the last quarter of the nineteenth century. In 1875, the first regional office of the Tsarist Russian State Bank was opened in Tashkent, which was a starting point of colonial banking in the region. The history of banking in the regions has several distinctive characteristics including banking was originally an exogenous system introduced by Russians. Central Asia was a predominantly traditional Muslim area which was not conducive for indigenous modern banking systems, while Mongolia was a mainly nomadic region with a small population scattered throughout the vast territory-both regions experienced extreme paradigm changes from capitalistic commercial banking to rigid socialist banking during end of 1920s and early 1930s, and vice versa in early 1990s. Both transitions were harsh and most banks closed mainly because of the different nature of socialist and capitalist banking systems. The banking histories of the regions provide rare examples of parallel histories or social experiments including: monetary and banking union of Bukhara, Khiva and Russia; the different transition paths of five former Soviet Union republics which were almost identical until 1987; perestroika banking reforms in Central Asia and in Mongolia. In Tsarist Central Asia, Kokand and Bukhara it experienced amazing rises and falls, due to extreme history, and the strong interaction and intervention of politics in banking activities.-the significance of natural resources and the how the resources are used and commodity price movements are decisive factors in banking sector since the 1990s. Resource rich countries, such as Kazakhstan with oil business and Mongolia with development of mining, expanded their banking sectors during boom years but faced distress during slump years.

The volume provides the first overview of the development of the banking sector in the whole region since its inception up until the present day and describes the key issues together with the historical time lines, emphasising the interdependency of political and social systems and banking development. It provides a useful source of reference for students of economic history, regional studies (Central Asia, Russia, China and Mongolia) and for economists, bankers, researchers, journalists and diplomats.

About the author: Mr Masaru Honma joined the EBRD in August 2002 as Director for Central Asia and Mongolia, based in London. Since then he had been an active member of CAREC Initiative, a main coordination body of Central Asian regional infrastructures. In May 2016 he was assigned to Director and Chief representative of the Tokyo Representative Office. He also covered Uzbekistan as head of the Tashkent Resident Office until September 2017. In April 2018 he retired from the EBRD and now works as Senior Visiting Researcher of the Policy Research Institute of the Ministry of Finance, Japan.

After his graduation from Kyoto University, Mr Honma joined the Ministry of Finance of Japan where he dealt with economic policy, banking supervision, taxation and state property management. Later, he held various positions relating to transition economies, including that of a Councillor and Head of Economic Section at the Japanese Embassy in Hungary; Advisor to the Minister of Finance of Poland and Head of Outreach Unit for Financial Sector Reforms in the OECD. During the height of the Japanese banking crisis, 1998 to 2002, Mr Honma was engaged in financial supervision and bank rehabilitation including as Director for Banking Inspection Division and Chief Public Relations Officer of the Financial Services Agency and Director General in charge of strategic planning, budget and international relations of the Deposit Insurance Corporation. In spring 2014, Mr Honma assumed a position of Deputy Director General in charge of Communications and Information Disclosure, Ministry of Finance of Japan.

Mr Honma has published several books and numerous articles on banking supervision, international finance as well as on economic reforms in transition economies. The books include “Deposit Insurance and Bank Failure Resolution” (Toyo Keizai Publisher, 2002), “Financial Sector Developments in Eastern Europe and Russia” (Toyo Keizai Publisher, 1998), and “Economic Perspectives in Central and Eastern Europe” (Ministry of Finance,
Japan, 1995).



Wednesday, 10 July, 2019 - 16:00 to 19:00
Event location: 
SG1, Alison Richard Building
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