At the same time, the green mortgage loan `Casa Mea NaturA` accounted for 32% of the monthly housing loan applications at the end of last year.

New loans of RON 9.4 billion were granted in 2021 by BCR to households (mortgage and unsecured consumer) and micro-businesses. The same amount, of RON 9.4 billion in 2021 was registered for new approved corporate loans to companies active in Romania, of which more than one quarter were aimed for investments.

Support was given to over 5,600 companies accounting for over 350,000 jobs, and 1,560 micro-businesses, 12% more than in 2020, and 14 NGOs and social enterprises were financed through BCR Social Finance in 2021.

BCR achieved a net profit of RON 1,409.8 million (EUR 286.5 million) in 2021, up by 73.0% against RON 814.1 million (EUR 168.3 million) in 2020, on the back of both improved operating performance mainly due to higher business volumes and lower risk cost allocation.

Operating result improved by 12.9% to RON 2,120.1 million (EUR 430.8 million) in 2021 from to RON 1,877.5 million (EUR 388.1 million) in 2020, on the back of higher operating income, while operating expenses marginally increased.

Net interest income slightly improved by 2.2% to RON 2,422.1 million (EUR 492.2 million) in 2021, from RON 2,371.0 million (EUR 490.1 million) in 2020, driven by higher loan and deposit volumes in both retail and corporate, partly offset by lower market rates.

Net fee and commission income strongly increased by 22.2%, to RON 867.9 million (EUR 176.4 million) in 2021, from RON 710.0 million (EUR 146.8 million) in 2020, on the back of higher transactional business.

Net trading result increased by 7.6%, to RON 383.5 million (EUR 77.9 million) in 2021, from RON 356.5 million (EUR 73.7 million) in 2020, mainly driven by higher trading activity.

Operating income increased by 6.9%, to RON 3,791.7 million (EUR 770.5 million) in 2021, from RON 3,546.3 million (EUR 733.0 million) in 2020, driven by higher business volumes.

General administrative expenses reached RON 1,671.6 million (EUR 339.7 million) in 2021, similar to RON 1,668.8 million (EUR 344.9 million) in 2020 mainly due to higher investments in IT, partly compensated by deconsolidation of CIT One subsidiary as well as by further efficiency gains.

As such, cost-income ratio improved to 44.1% in 2021, versus 47.1% in 2020.