The National Bank of Ukraine (NBU) is ready to nationalize PrivatBank a second time if a court rules to annul a respective decision of 2016, First Deputy NBU Governor Kateryna Rozhkova has said.
Rozhkova said reversing the nationalization would reverse the mechanism by which the state handed the bank UAH 155 billion ($5.88 billion) to rescue it from insolvency.
“Then the bank will be left without capital. We, as a regulator of the financial sector, will make a decision in accordance with the law: Article 56 of the law tells us that we must declare such a bank insolvent,” she said.
This would mean either liquidating the bank or taking it back into state ownership, she said, adding that returning it to state hands would be preferable given its role in the economy.
PrivatBank is Ukraine’s biggest lender and has the most depositors, about 20 million by Rozhkova’s estimate, in a nation of 42 million.
Rozhkova also said that the PrivatBank issue would likely top the agenda when an International Monetary Fund mission would visit Kyiv next week. Ukraine hopes to secure IMF aid worth $1.3 billion after the visit.
A Kyiv court ruled in favor of Kolomoisky in April by declaring that the nationalization process had been illegal. The central bank is appealing the decision in a higher court. (Ukrinform/Business World Magazine)