The Finance Ministry has been spurned into action by the news reported by Bloomberg that AB CarVal Investors and Caius Capital are interested in selling their shares in the Bank of Cyprus, which together amount to 14.65 per cent of the bank’s equity.

On Friday afternoon, a Finance Ministry official told the Cyprus News Agency (CNA) that the ministry is closely monitoring how the situation unfolds.

We will not accept the Bank of Cyprus being sold to an entity of Greek interests,” the official told the agency.

It is worth noting that control of Hellenic Bank, Cyprus’ second-largest bank, has already passed to Greece’s Eurobank.

In this context, the same official issued a reminder that the bill for the control of foreign direct investments is currently before the House.

The bill has undergone a renewed consultation, and the necessary parliamentary procedures for its approval are expected to move forward.

Moreover, the agency also reported that sources in the banking and investment sectors revealed that intermediaries appointed by the two funds to explore potential buyers’ interest have approached other major Bank of Cyprus shareholders, in order to gauge their interest in selling their shares as well.

It should be noted that Greek lender Alpha Bank, which was mentioned in the original Bloomberg report, has denied any involvement but left the door open, stating that it is considering investment opportunities within the framework of its announced strategic plan.

The agency added that the same sources indicated that it cannot be ruled out that the National Bank of Greece might also be among the potential buyers, as it has the necessary funds for such a move.