ECONOMY

Banks want a recap extension

Greek banks are putting pressure on the government to allow more time for their recapitalization, as they expect that the prevailing favorable climate will improve further in the next few months with the emergence of tangible signs of progress for the economy.

This improvement should benefit the effort of local lenders to find private investors for their share capital increases that would safeguard the banks’ private character.

Nevertheless, sector sources acknowledge that it will be very difficult for the timetable of the process to be changed.

National Bank is the only lender with genuine hopes for such a demand to be satisfied, thanks to the merger process it has set in motion with Eurobank Ergasias which is expected to be completed by June.

The original plan is for local banks to be recapitalized by April. The report of the International Monetary Fund on Greece, published on Friday, says nothing about an extension.