Italy's rescue plan for troubled bank gets EU approval

Italy's rescue plan for troubled bank gets EU approval

The plan to restructure struggling bank Monte dei Paschi di Siena will provide "a credible future" for the institution while ensuring stability to the Italian banking sector, the country's finance minister has said.

Pier Carlo Padoan was speaking after the European Commission approved Italy's plans to inject €5.4 bn into the world's oldest bank as part of a five-year restructuring plan that the bank's management will outline to investors on Wednesday.

Italy's banking system has been weighed down by a heavy load of bad loans due to a prolonged crisis in the eurozone's third-largest economy coupled with management issues.

Besides the Monte dei Paschi rescue, Mr Padoan has been ushering through a plan to save two co-operative banks in the productive northern Veneto region, where account holders have lost billions of euros.

Italy's rescue plan for troubled bank gets EU approval

The Commission cleared the Monte dei Paschi capital injection only after the contribution of €4.3 bn from the bank's shareholders and junior creditors, as required by EU rules meant to minimise the cost of bailouts for taxpayers.

Once the operation is complete, the Italian government will hold a 70% stake in the bank. Mr Padoan said he expected that Italy will be repaid its investment in full, with some returns, although he did not specify by when and how much.

"The rescue is an extremely important element for the bank and the Italian banking system, and another sign of a turnaround after the agreement last week on the Veneto banks," Mr Padoan told a press conference.

"It is a plan that provides certainty and a sustainable future to the bank that will have a very important capital level."

The capital injection is intended to give the bank a buffer in case of worsening economic conditions.

The restructuring includes moving more than €26 bn in soured loans off its balance sheets, according to the EU Commission.

Commission Vice President Valdis Dombrovskis said the capital injection "should protect financial stability in Europe and limit the burden on taxpayers".

Mr Padoan also expressed confidence that the Italian parliament would approve the decree to save the two Veneto banks.

AP

More in this Section

Nine migrants found alive inside lorry container in UK town of Kent Nine migrants found alive inside lorry container in UK town of Kent

Trump name removed from ice rinks in New York’s Central ParkTrump name removed from ice rinks in New York’s Central Park

Channel 4 postpones Smuggled documentary after bodies found in lorryChannel 4 postpones Smuggled documentary after bodies found in lorry

Benny Gantz asked to form Israel government following poll impasseBenny Gantz asked to form Israel government following poll impasse


Lifestyle

I had to turn off Dublin Murders with 15 minutes to go. We were watching the first episode because I had to review it the following day for the Today Show on RTÉ.Learner Dad: 'I like to see myself as relaxed but I’m obviously bottling up a fair few anxieties'

Purchasing a thatched cottage was a decision that would change Liam Broderick’s life. Kya deLongchamps meets the long-time thatcherMade in Munster: Meet Cork thatcher Liam Broderick

We take a trip back through the Wolves singer’s most major fashion moments.As Selena Gomez surprises fans with new music, these are some of her best style moments

Sue Rynhart sings at the Green Room in Cork Opera House on Saturday as part of Guinnness Cork Jazz Festival. She is from Dublin and is the mother of three boys.A Question of Taste with Sue Rynhart

More From The Irish Examiner