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March 30, 2023

Cyprus bailout: Finance Minister Michael Sarris quits, media

Cypriot Finance Minister Michael Sarris has resigned after completing talks on a controversial bailout deal, BBC informs. Sarris will be replaced by Labour Minister Haris Georgiades, reports in the local media suggest. On Tuesday, the Cypriot government said that President Nicos Anastasiades had accepted the resignation of Sarris, who had been under fire for his handling of the bailout deal. The president earlier ordered an investigation into what led the island nation to the brink of bankruptcy before it was forced to accept tough bailout conditions. The inquiry will be carried out by a three-judge panel.

Bank of Cyprus temporary closes Romanian branch in view of sale

Bank of Cyprus suspended for a week its operations in Romania, starting April 1st, according to a decision made by the Central Bank of Cyprus, in view of identifying a solution to sell its Bucharest-based branch, while customers may still withdraw money from ATMs, the bank announced Monday, quoted by Mediafax. According to bank sources, until the Romanian branch and its offices will open, customers can use the ATM network, and for “special needs” they are invited to get in touch with the call-center of Bank of Cyprus. The press release mentions that the reorganisation measures are enforced in line with art. 33 (paragraph 1) of the Banking Law of Cyprus and Directive 2001/24/EC of the Parliament and Council, of 4 April 2001.

Selling the Bucharest branch of Bank of Cyprus will bring the deposits made in this bank under the incidence of Romanian laws, with the suspension of operations until the transaction is completed being negotiated last week by BNR with the Central Bank of Cyprus, the BNR advisor Adrian Vasilescu explained. He added that, under the acting regulations, Bank of Cyprus – an entity founded in Cyprus, licensed and monitored by the Central Bank of this country – is subject to any regulation ruled by the institution of that country.

The advisor to the BNR governor mentioned that, although there are high chances that the takeover is conducted within a week’s time, there is also the possibility that it takes longer. 

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