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Athens News Agency: News in English, 08-10-14

Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] FinMin briefs PM over credit crisis

  • [01] FinMin briefs PM over credit crisis

    Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis on Tuesday was briefed by Economy and Finance Minister George Alogoskoufis over developments in an international credit crisis and its impact on global economy.

    Speaking to reporters, after the meeting, Alogoskoufis said the Greek government has taken initiatives aimed at supporting the solvency of the Greek financial system and added: ?We move forward with a plan to ensure that the credit crisis will have the minimum impact on Greek economy, growth, employment and citizens. Based on this plan and decisions taken by EU leaders recently, we will move forward in the coming days?.

    The Greek minister stressed that developed countries were expected to witness a significant slowdown in economic growth, while developing economies will perform better.

    EU summit

    Prime Minister Karamanlis will depart for Brussels on Wednesday in order to take part in the two-day European Council meeting. Following the end of the EU summit on Thursday, Karamanlis will head for Frankfurt and a meeting with the President of the European Central Bank Jean-Claude Trichet.

    NBG governor

    In a related development, Takis Arapoglou, the National Bank's chairman and chief executive, told reporters in New York on Monday that the Greek banking system was strong and resisted the international credit crisis.

    The Greek banker said the Greek banking system did not suffer any damages compared with what happened in other countries. Arapoglou said there was no indication that non-performing loans were rising and stressed that National Bank's business plan for the period 2007-2009 was not revised. He noted that competition was now transfered to capital adequacy, liquidity and portfolio quality and not to conquering additional market shares based on profitability.

    He said that the bank was normally continuing its lending operations to private customers, although he noted that the bank has "tightened its credit criteria" to safeguard its loan portfolio.

    Arapoglou stressed the credit crisis will result to a wave of mergers and acquisitions aimed to boosting revenues through lower operating costs. He noted that high interest rates in the interbank market will need time to return to low levels, a procedure depending on the time needed for markets to regain confidence.

    Foreign institutional investors maintained their positions in National Bank's equity capital (around 53 pct), Arapoglou said, adding that National Bank will have an advantage compared with other large European banks when the conditions in the banking system returned to normal.

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