The Slovenia Times

Salvaging of Banks to Cost EUR 0.5bn by Year's End


The stalemate, which was partly caused by Banka Slovenije's opposition to the bad bank act, is causing serious public financial damage, the minister warns in the interview.

Šušteršič finds it irresponsible that the central bank is maintaining that the banking system is stable in the current situation. "This benefits no one but merely gives alibi to those who are saying that we still have plenty of time to discuss possible solutions."

According to the minister, there are some banks in Slovenia which are on the very edge. If the bad bank act was implemented in September, all the necessary solutions could be drawn up for these banks by the end of the year.

But since the delay occurred due to a referendum initiative, the minister expects the banks which are in trouble to start "aggressively" selling off their real estate and stakes in companies.

He believes this is their responsibility, as this is the only way they can obtain the urgently needed funds.

The minister also expects the government to speed up the process of selling-off of state-owned banks.

This means that by blocking the bad bank act, trade unions will have achieved the exact opposite of what they wanted.

"The banks which the government has no control over will have to aggressively cash in their insurances, sell claims and exactly that what the unions wanted to prevent will happen - a complete sale."

Šušteršič also commented on the passed supplementary budget for next year, saying that another one would not be necessary, as only about EUR 20-30m of revenue were uncertain.

"The deficit will be such as we projected it to be, at 3% of GDP and we'll see in April what that means in European methodology," he said.


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