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Finance Ministry mulls firm to handle "toxic" bank assets

The share of non-performing loans in the banking system of Ukraine is at 44.6% and keeps growing.

Finance Ministry mulls firm to handle "toxic" bank assets
Photo: Photo: Max Levin

The Ministry of Finance has set a working group to work out a concept of a management company for "toxic" bank assets, said the press service of the Deposit Guarantee Fund, where this issue was discussed.

In banking community "toxic" assets means insider and blank (uncovered) loans, bailouts, and loans that are long overdue.

"At the beginning of the year, the share of NPL (non-performing loans) in the banking system of Ukraine was estimated at 44.6% .The updated data indicate that this factor continues to grow, and today is the highest among the countries of Europe," the head of NBU's Department for Reformation of the Financial Sector, Yevhen Stepaniuk, said as quoted by the central bank's press office.

Stepaniuk stressed that "toxic assets" is a systemic problem that requires a comprehensive approach. "We are considering several options of releasing bank balances from low-quality assets or attracting professional management to handle them, including by creating a special company to manage problem assets," the official said.

"International experience shows that the work of such a company can be successful provided that effective judicial and executive practice is implemented. For the National Bank, addressing the issue of problem assets is a top priority," Stepaniuk stressed.

"It is key not only to resume lending but also to ensure financial stability in the country," he concluded.