FBME calls on CBC to re­scind decision to sell branch

Financial Mirror (Cyprus) - - FRONT PAGE -

FBME Bank Cyprus has called on the Cen­tral Bank of Cyprus to re­scind its decision to shut the branch and sell its as­sets.

In a pub­lic com­ment from FBME’s lawyers, Ho­gan Lovells, in relation to the sub­mis­sion to the US Depart­ment of the Trea­sury’s FinCEN bureau in Wash­ing­ton, it said that the the foren­sic ac­coun­tants from Ernst and Young in their as­sess­ment of FBME’s com­pli­ance pro­gramme ob­served that the bank’s pro­ce­dures “in­cor­po­rate the re­quire­ments” of the rel­e­vant laws.

“Th­ese laws are the EU’s Third Money Laun­der­ing Di­rec­tive and the fourth is­sue of the Cen­tral Bank of Cyprus’ di­rec­tive to credit in­sti­tu­tions”, said the an­nounce­ment.

The EU as­sess­ment fur­ther re­ported that the FBME has “pro­to­cols in place that al­low the bank to con­tin­u­ously keep the pro­gramme aligned with th­ese le­gal re­quire­ments”.

As the pub­lic state­ment makes clear, the FBME has re­stated its com­mit­ment to con­tin­u­ing to co­op­er­ate with the gov­ern­ments of the US, Cyprus and Tan­za­nia in the fight against money laun­der­ing and ter­ror­ist fi­nanc­ing.

“Rec­om­men­da­tions have been made in ar­eas where its com­pli­ance pro­gramme can be im­proved, which the bank has al­ready com­mit­ted to im­ple­ment­ing”, says the state­ment.

The sub­mis­sion of the full foren­sics re­port is ex­pected to take place over the next 60 days.

At the same time, FBME’s share­hold­ers called for a change of pol­icy on the part of the Cen­tral Bank of Cyprus.

“The Cen­tral Bank needs to re­scind the Res­o­lu­tion mea­sures on the Cyprus branch, to al­low de­pos­i­tors to have ac­cess to their funds on a proper ba­sis, and to aban­don ideas of an ex­pro­pri­a­tion and sale of the Cyprus branch”, the an­nounce­ment said.

On July 21 the Res­o­lu­tion Au­thor­ity is­sued a De­cree, which placed the branch of FBME Bank Ltd in Cyprus un­der res­o­lu­tion, with the pur­pose to sell the op­er­a­tions of the branch “with the aim of pro­tect­ing FBME de­pos­i­tors”, after a US Trea­sury re­port im­pli­cated the bank in money laun­der­ing.

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