Cyprus Finmin vows to take all necessary decisions to safeguard financial stability

Cyprus Finance Minister Harris Georgiades vowed to take all decisions necessary to safeguard the stability of the island’s banking sector.

His comments came as the government is involved in a bidding process to sell the good part of the Cyprus Cooperative Bank (CCB), the island’s second largest lender, nationalised since the 2012 financial crisis, that prompted the government to seek financial assistance from the EU and the IMF.

The CCB privatisation process is part of a three-pillar strategy drafted by the Finance Ministry to address the pressing problem of non-performing loans, which in end-January amounted to Euros 22 billion of 45.7% of total loans.

Speaking to an economic conference, organized by the EIB and the Nicosia Chamber of Commerce and Industry to present barriers to business investment, Georgiades highlighted that the robustness and sound operation of the banking system is an important parameter for attracting investments.

And I would like to assure that the government will take the decisions necessary to safeguard financial stability, he said, adding that the efforts will continue to further address the NPL problem in a way that renders the island’s banking system not only capable of supporting the real economy but also to respond to the regulatory pressures and to operate in the demanding environment of the European Banking Union.

Georgiades also said the government will present to the political parties and the European Commission its proposals aiming at improving the legal framework enabling the swifter reduction of NPLs.

The Finance Minister also referred to the reforms promoted by the government such as the reform in the justice system a vital factor for the country’s competitiveness, reforms in the Local Administration.

He added that significant developments will take place in technology and e-government within the next five years.

Source: Cyprus News Agency