In an effort to improve their financial status and increase their liquidity, major banks in Cyprus place the restructuring of non-performing loans (NPLs) as a priority for the new year, especially now after the government has recently passed the respective law on NPLs.
According to recent statements from the CEOs of most major Cyprus banking institutions to Phileleftheros newspaper on Sunday the foreclosure procedures will begin as soon as the first quarter of the year.
CEO of Bank of Cyprus Patrick Hourican said that the time has come for the banks to take active measures on the issue and stop being passive players. “We have initiated more than a 100 foreclosure cases and we plan to increase that number in the first quarter of the year” he said. He added though that it is not the bank’s intention to leave people on the streets.
Hellenic Bank’s CEO Irena Georgiadou said “we will not show any patience or sympathy for those loan holders who have built extravagant houses in a number of plots with huge swimming pools and three to four luxurious cars”. In those cases, Georgiadou adds, the bank will go forward and take the house.
Co-op CEO Nicolas Hadjigiannis said that his bank will not go after small loan owners and it will do the best to protect their interests, however, in those cases in which the client is not cooperative with the bank then his institution will act differently.