Piraeus Bank president says urges investment in Greece
Sallas points out that bank stocks have suffered around the world, not just in Greece
The fall in bank share prices is not a Greek phenomenon, Mihalis Sallas, the chairman of Piraeus Bank told German newspaper Handelsblatt on February 18.
Sallas was asked about the drop in Greek bank share prices just a few months after their recapitalization.
“The environment of the whole market must be taken into view. Markets are monitoring monetary policy more cautiously now. Big market indexes such as Dow Jones and Dax are recording losses this year, a trend that has affected all banks, it is not entirely a Greek phenomenon. Our job is to consistently execute our work, improving our weak spots and implementing a long-term strategy,” Sallas said.
He added that Greek banks should focus on further cutting expenses, closely monitoring earnings sources and focusing on the Greek market to establish our power. “However, we wish to address, being stronger now, to foreign enterprises investing in Greece,” Sallas said, adding that “we are recording satisfactory progress in the restructuring of our non-performing loans”.
Piraeus bank, he said, has a a 19.6 pct basic capital rate, which according to Sallas is a good level while it has already set up its own Non Permorming Loans (NPLs) settlement unit.
Germany has done a great lot for Greece during the crisis, Sallas added. “It has funded the biggest part of bailout programmes. We cooperate closely with several German companies, such as Fraport, Lidl, Hochtief, Tui and Beiersdorf, to mention a few. If I could express a wish, it would be: Invest in Greece! Despite critics, Greece offers good opportunities for enterprises,” Sallas said.