Banks should be left as they are

It would be a grave mistake if Greek banks were stripped of their private character.

The country has paid dearly in the past for the sins committed by banks that were entirely controlled by the state and almost exclusively worked toward serving and protecting their own boys and cronies.

The country saw how great the difference between a state-owned and a private bank is when National Bank of Greece transformed under the guardianship of former Governor Theodoros Karantzas into an institution that operated according to the rules and criteria of a private enterprise rather than a dated organization governed by political considerations and burdened by bureaucracy.

Any shift back to the model of state-run banks, a model which belongs firmly in the past, would cause a great deal of harm to the economy and the country, which is struggling to get back on its feet.