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CORPORATE BRIEFS

NBS slaps caretaker administration on Priemyselná Banka

The National Bank of Slovakia (NBS) announced on October 19 it had imposed a caretaker administration on the Košice-based Priemyselná Banka. The main reasons for the decision were insufficient liquidity at Priemyselná to ensure the bank could meet its obligations, repeated postponement of payments of large clients, repeated failure to meet the minimum reserves requirement set by the central bank, and the fact that Priemyselná had not summoned a special shareholders meeting to deal with the problems.

NBS spokesman Ján Onda added that indications that the bank's management was acting against the bank's interests are still being investigated.

"In order to accelerate the solution of problems, [state bank] Slovenská Sporiteľňa will be supporting the liquidity of Priemyselná Banka. There is no reason for panic. The NBS wants to cancel the caretaker administration and renew the bank's regular operations as soon as possible," said Onda.

Priemyselná Banka in September was the subject of a de facto privatisation when state-owned entities which controlled a majority share in the bank (principal among them gas utility SPP) failed to participate in an increase in the bank's share capital. Finance Minister Brigita Schmögnerová vowed after the state's share in Priemyselná fell from 51% to 37% that the cabinet would use all the tools at its disposal to ensure that the bank was not mismanaged by the group of four private investors who had entered Priemyselná during the capital increase.

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