Cyprus Mail

Etyk threatens with strike, says not informed over co-op sale

Bank workers union Etyk is once more threatening with strike action, this time over what it says was the co-operative bank’s failure to inform them about the plans to seek investors.

In a statement issued on Wednesday, the union said the co-op management was legally obligated to consult with Etyk.

“If they force us with their stance, we will not hesitate to take all necessary measures, legal and industrial,” Etyk said.

It accused the management of lacking transparency, making the wrong decisions, and mismanaging funds, putting the lender on dangerous paths.

“It is saddening, once more to see the developments confirm our concerns, which no official had heeded.”

On Monday, the co-op bank opened a virtual data room to be used by potential investors to securely exchange data and analyses, as the lender seeks to reduce the state’s share.

The process launched by the bank has two parts, one offering the choice of acquiring the co-op as a licensed entity, or part of, or all its assets and liabilities.

The process will close on March 29. After that, potential investors will be given time to submit binding offers.

The co-op bank was recapitalised with €1.67bn in taxpayer money in 2014 and 2015, but it is struggling with some €6.4bn in non-performing loans, accounting for more than half of its loan portfolio.


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