Stournaras: Hercules plan for lower NPLs significant, but not enough

Thursday, 10 Oct 2019 20:53 UPD: 20:55

Dealing with the specter of non-performing loans held by Greece's four systemic banks is absolutely imperative for the sector's health and its ability to finance investments that will support the real economy in Greece, the country's central banker, Yannis Stournaras, said on Thursday.

The high-profile Bank of Greece (BoG) governor spoke at the Piraeus maritime club, and in reference to the "Hercules" plan to reduce NPLs, which was recently approved the EU Commission.

Stournaras said NPLs in the country have fallen to 75 billion euros by mid 2019, still a whopping 43.6 percent of the total value of loans extended by systemic banks in the country.

The Hercules plans includes state guarantees of up to nine billion euros for the senior portion.

Nevertheless, Stournaras added that "...given the magnitude of the problem, this step is not enough, and must immediately be complemented in the subsequent stage by more holistic and systemic schemes, such as the ones processed by the BoG's services."


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