The government has requested the resignations of the executives of all the country’s main banks ahead of changes it is planning to their governing boards, Minister of State for Coordinating Government Operations Alekos Flambouraris stated on Tuesday, just a few days after an agreement between Athens and the eurozone that included a Greek pledge that the local credit sector would be allowed to operate on purely commercial and banking principles.
Flambouraris stated that despite the disagreement with the European Central Bank over the changes in the banks’ governing boards, “we have asked for their resignations and will change their administrations. We will in any case proceed with these changes because banks constitute the leverage for growth. Banks with boards which are under public and social control are obliged to finance small and medium-sized enterprises so that growth can proceed.”
These statements go completely against the pledges the government made to its creditors regarding the stability of the banking system.
A few days ago the ECB’s Single Supervisory Mechanism rejected a change sought by the government to the administration of National Bank. Banking sources say that besides the case of National, where the available options are being examined, there has been no discussion of changes – let alone resignations – at Alpha Bank or at Piraeus.