OPINION

Saving banks from the state

It is crucial that Greek banks remain in private hands, especially given the plethora of evidence that the model applied to lenders in the past had catastrophic consequences.

When banks were in state hands and allowed to be manipulated by politicians and political parties, they made a bigger contribution to servicing the needs of cronies and powerful vested interests than they did to the growth of the economy and the well-being of the country as a whole.

Under no circumstances should Greece be allowed to go back to those days.

That said, Greek lenders have a long way to go in order to reach the standard expected of them. One of their first tasks is to cut the Gordian knot of unserviceable loans in a way that is transparent and with determination.

If they are to play a role in the rebound of the Greek economy and ensure the further inflow of capital from foreign investors, there is no other solution than that they remain private.