Erste Group Bank Can Repay Bailout Funds Received

May 16
6:32 PM 2013

The Erste Group Bank of Austria has announced that it can repay the Eur1.2 billion or US$1.54 billion of state bailout aid it had received in the last global banking meltdown. The bank said it can pay at any time but said that it still had no schedule to make payments to the state coffers.

According to Chief Finance Officer Manfred Wimmer, in a statement before the bank's yearly shareholders meeting, "We already feel placed for this." He did say that the actual transfer of payment is dependent upon discussions with regulators.

CEO Andreas Treichi added, "My hope is that this will be the case relatively soon."

Treichi further added that Erste had no intention to support the creation of a 'bad bank' to receive the bad loans and credits, in order to allow nationalized bank Hypo Alpe Adria more enticing to possible buyers.

He further said, "I find Erste Group's contribution to the Austrian banking sector is fully covered with this. We don't intend to make an additional contribution. Others should do this." Treichi was referring to a current bank levy that financed the state rescue of a fellow Austrian bank, Volksbanken AG.

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