The Finance Ministry said on January 26 that a plan for the privatisation of the state's 50.8% stake in one of the country's biggest banks, VÚB a.s., would be ready by March.
After its approval by the government, the ministry said it would take practical steps to bring the plan to fruition with a final decision on the future strategic investor probably being taken at the beginning of next year.
"...The government will, as one of its priorities, work on making more attractive the conditions for the entry of a solvent foreign investor who could take part in a public tender in this privatisation transaction," a statement from the ministry said.
VÚB currently has assets of around 170 billion Sk ($4.58 billion).
VÚB board member František Szikhart said in December that the bank's capital adequacy ratio would be lower at end of 1998 than at the end of the previous year when it was 6.23%. He would not disclose the level of VUB's classified loans.
The new Slovak government, which came to power following an election in September, said in its policy programme that it wanted to restructure and then privatise the country's banks, preferably with the help of foreign capital.