'Bad debt' plaguing Greece's systemic banks reportedly dominates post-bailout supervision

Tuesday, 22 January 2019 12:44
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By E. Sakellari

Post-bailout negotiations between creditors' top auditors and the Tsipras government will be dominated by the specter of "bad debt" hanging over Greece's four systemic banks, an issue considered as paramount by the SSM, confirming an earlier report by "N".

According to reports, previous meetings over the recent period between creditors' representatives and Greek banks' officials - in the presence of the IMF - were punctuated by particularly "strict reprimands" towards the banks.

Creditors, according to the same reports, tabled major demands vis-a-vis efforts to reduce NPLs and NPEs, as well as lower operational costs by Greece's thrice-recapitalized systemic banks.

Analysts have pointed to a new leadership at the helm of the Single Supervisory Mechanism (SSM), as well as a view by creditors of Greece having entered a pre-election period, as the primary reason for the stricter stance.  

As such, pressing demands have been made for greater and immediate efforts to slash "bad debt" through the sale of NPL portfolios to distress funds, despite the fact that Greek banks' have achieved short-term targets.

Creditors also want lower operational costs for Greek banks, with the latter pointing out that previous targets have been fulfilled and even more ambitious goals have been cited.

Creditor representatives on Tuesday are due to meet with a delegation of the Hellenic Bank Association (HBA) and relevant ministers.

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