EUROPE: Cyprus achieves largest annual reduction of NPLs

Cyprus recorded the biggest reduction of Non-Performing Loans (NPLs) in the EU, with -32.02% drop, between Q3 2017 and Q3 2018, according to a European Commission report.

More specifically the stock of NPLs has been reduced from 32.1% in Q3 2017 to 21.8% in Q3 2018. In Greece the reductions happened at a rate of -6.7%, from 46.7% to 43.5%.

In its fourth progress report on the reduction of non-performing loans (NPLs), the Commission confirmed that NPL levels are continuing their downward trajectory towards pre-crisis levels.

The ratio of NPLs in EU banks has come down by more than half since 2014, declining to 3.3% in Q3 2018 and down by 1.2 percentage points year-on-year.

The robustness of this downward move should encourage the Union and its Member States to keep up their collective endeavours in order to convincingly address remaining NPL stocks and prevent future accumulations thereof, said the report.

Particularly in some Member States, NPL ratios remain a challenge and deserve continued attention.

The Commissioned called on all stakeholders, both at national and European level, to finalise the remaining ongoing actions without delay.

It has been working with Member States to enable case-specific solutions for banks within the framework of EU State aid and banking rules, with a clear objective of limiting costs to taxpayers whilst making sure depositors remained fully protected at all times.

This enabled transactions that removed some Euros 133 bln of gross NPLs from the balance sheets of banks over the last three years (around Euros 103 bln in Italy; Euros 24 bln in Portugal; around Euros 6 bln in Cyprus).

Source: The Financial Mirror