Eurozone: Bankers-politicians rig keeps robbing taxpayers

Alenka Bratušek, Slovenian Prime Minister at the rostrum, in the presence of Štefan Füle, Member of the EC in charge of Enlargement and European Neighbourhood Policy, Laurent Fabius, French Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Development, and Kristalina Georgieva, Member of the EC in charge of International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response, (seated, from left to right). International donors' conference for Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia after the devastating floods in the Balkans. (EC Audiovisual Services, 16/07/2014).

Alenka Bratušek, Slovenian Prime Minister at the rostrum, in the presence of Štefan Füle, Member of the EC in charge of Enlargement and European Neighbourhood Policy, Laurent Fabius, French Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Development, and Kristalina Georgieva, Member of the EC in charge of International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response, (seated, from left to right). International donors’ conference for Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia after the devastating floods in the Balkans. (EC Audiovisual Services, 16/07/2014).

Last week the European Commission ruthlessly wrote the last chapter of the Slovenian financial tragedy. In it, this nation of only two million people was forced by Brussels to save with around €7 billion of taxpayers’ money (a bit less than one tenth of GDP) the overgrown, reckless, aggressive even fraudulent banking system of this otherwise healthy economy. Certainly this is not a Balkan malady. Unfortunately, the small and beautiful country is the latest victim of the global disease, which threatened to send the real economy of the world to chaos. Simply, the international banking cancer of imprudent lending and super risky bets this time struck the third largest bank of Slovenia, the Abanka.

Last December the poor Slovenian taxpayers were forced by Brussels and the European Central Bank to pay the costs to save Nova Ljubljanska banka d.d. (NLB) and of Nova Kreditna Banka Maribor d. d. (NKBM), the largest and second largest banks of the tiny republic. By the same token Slovenians were forced to pay for the winding down of two other banks, the Factor Banka and Probanka. These last two lenders had crossed any line of honesty and prudency and usurped the money deposited with them by the unsuspecting customers. Of course the guilt weights also on the European and national financial watchdogs and auditors, who despite of being responsible to protect the citizens from ‘sharks’ they betrayed them.

An ‘urgent’ case

The European Commission presented this decision as urgently needed measures to “ensure that Slovenia’s economy can count on a viable, healthy banking sector”. Not a word about who was responsible within the banks’ management, the owners (that is the politicians, because the banks are state-owned) and the supervisory authorities for the incredible ‘party’ with other people’s money.

Let’s start from this latest act, in this vast swindle, which started in the US and then spread all over the Western financial system. Ljubljana was the last prey of the banking vultures. All the major banks in the country participated in this world-wide hoax. For as long as the ‘game’ could continue and produce immense takings pocketed by managers, shareholders and dealers, everything was all right and the competent authorities and auditors had nothing to comment or scrutinise. When the trickery became apparent and the bets in every conceivable market went sour, the Commission rushed to Ljubljana to ‘approve the needed measures’ as it had done in Dublin, Nicosia, Madrid and Athens. Not to forget the hundreds of billions paid by the British, the German and French taxpayers to save the lenders in their countries, with or without the Commission’s approval.

The Slovenian tragedy

The last case in the Slovenian drama is Abanka. “The plan covers a first State recapitalisation of €348 million, temporarily authorised by the Commission in December 2013, and a second recapitalisation of €243 million together with a transfer of assets to the Slovenian asset management company (BAMC) of €1 087 million (gross book value)”. This last BAMC is not new. There is one BAMC in every European capital.

Those BAMCs are the ‘bad banks’ created by governments, to undertake the non-performing loans and other toxic assets of the regular banks and make the taxpayers responsible to cover the losses. The real culpable parties, the bankers, who had approved the bad loans and placements got away as if nothing had happened. Probably a large part of those loans had found its way even to the pockets of politicians. In the case of Greece the two major political parties, New Democracy and PASOK, had been handed hundreds of millions in unsubstantiated loans from the country’s banks on collateral of their future…turnouts in elections.

Coming back to Slovenia, the core decision to load the banking trickeries and losses on taxpayers was taken last December in Brussels. On that occasion, the Commission had “approved in five distinct decisions state aid measures in favor of five Slovenian banks. The Commission approved the restructuring plans of NLB and of NKBM, in particular because they will enable the banks to become viable in the long-term without unduly distorting competition. The Commission also approved aid for the orderly winding down of Factor Banka d.d. and Probanka d.d., … Finally, the Commission temporarily approved rescue aid in favor of Abanka Vipa d.d. (Abanka), for reasons of financial stability”. Nova Ljubljanska Banka, Nova KBM and Abanka are state-owned, a fact that makes the politico-banking rig even more apparent.

Free billions for the bankers

The truth remains that the Slovenian taxpayers have been asked to support the country’s banks with €3bn in recapitalisations, plus another €4.6bn in non-performing loans and other assets, which have been transferred to the ‘bad bank’. Large tarts of it will be written off as loss at taxpayers’ expenses. Most or all of this money can be attributed to fraudulent loans and super-risky placements decided by the country’s bankers – politicians unholy alliance.

It is even more disturbing to watch this flagrant robbery of the Slovenian taxpayers, only a few months after the Eurozone’s decision makers agreed in the Eurogroup on the creation of the European Banking Union. Allegedly, the prime objectives of the EBU are to cut the umbilical cord between bankers and politicians and relieve taxpayers from the burden of bailing out failing banks. Alas it proves to be a lie.

All in all the last act of the Slovenian banking tragedy proves that Eurozone’s prime target is not the wellbeing of citizens, but rather the dishonest enrichment of bankers and politicians.

 

the sting Milestones

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

5 creative alternatives to plastic packaging

UN chief condemns student abductions in north-west Cameroon

How the gender commuting gap could be harming women’s careers

These 11 companies are leading the way to a circular economy

Here’s how we get businesses to harmonize on climate change

A Sting Exclusive: “Regional Policy: a fully-fledged investment policy”, Commissioner Cretu reveals live from European Business Summit 2015

How the mobile industry is driving climate progress on the scale of a major economy

These countries are leading the way in green finance

Movius @ MWC14: Discussing novel Communications Applications over a “CAFÉ”

International Day of the Midwife: 5 things you should know

UN Security Council welcomes results of Mali’s presidential elections

UNICEF warns of ‘lost generation’ of Rohingya youth, one year after Myanmar exodus

Residents and visitors to this Dutch neighborhood could share a pool of cars and bikes

Rising insecurity in Central Africa Republic threatens wider region, Security Council told

Medical education during COVID-19 pandemic

Horn of Africa: UN chief welcomes Djibouti agreement between Eritrea, Ethiopia and Somalia

Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris climate deal is bad for US business. Here’s why.

Mental distress during the pandemic: is there a way out?

Social, cultural diversity ‘an enormous richness, not a threat’ Guterres declares calling on investment for a harmonious future

Commission reaches agreement with collaborative economy platforms to publish key data on tourism accommodation

European Commission presents comprehensive approach for the modernisation of the World Trade Organisation

Migration crisis, a human crisis after all

EU consumers will soon be able to defend their rights collectively

A Sting Exclusive: “Climate Change needs to be demystified”, Anneli Jättenmäki Vice President of European Parliament underscores from Brussels

Commission statement on the European Remembrance Day for Victims of Terrorism

Ηealth’s foundation is falling apart: what can we do about it?

MWC19 Wrap Up, in association with The European Sting, GSMA’s Brussels Media Partner for the 6th Consecutive Year

Does hosting a World Cup make economic sense?

Cyprus tragedy reveals Eurozone’s arbitrary functioning

5 inventions that could transform the health of our ocean

Yemen: ‘A great first step’ UN declares as aid team accesses grain silo which can feed millions

It’s time to end our ‘separate but unequal’ approach to mental health

Education remains an impossible dream for many refugees and migrants

iSting: Change Europe with your Writing

Now doctors can manipulate genetics to modify babies, is it ethical?

One more country to test the EU project: Kaczynski’s Poland

4 ways leaders are driving innovation in the public sector and revolutionising governance

10 of Albert Einstein’s best quotes

Will Boris Johnson’s victory lead to a no-deal Brexit or is there still time?

How 2020 taught businesses to place empathy before profit

Coronavirus COVID-19 wipes $50 billion off global exports in February alone, as IMF pledges support for vulnerable nations

Korea should improve the quality of employment for older workers

These companies can recycle nearly anything, from cigarette butts to fax machines

Cancer research put at risk by General Data Protection Regulation? The possible dangers of a data privacy EU mania

75 years after Auschwitz liberation, antisemitism still threatens ‘foundations of democratic societies’

This new form of currency could transform the way we see money

The Japanese have a word to help them be less wasteful – ‘mottainai’

Look no hands: self-driving vehicles’ public trust problem

Why Eurozone can afford spending for growth

Lack of involvement, or lack of opportunities?

3 reasons why responsibly-deployed technology is key to the COVID recovery

As Saudi women take the wheel, UN chief hopes end of driving ban creates more opportunities for kingdom’s women and girls

This is what the world’s CEOs think about the global outlook

EU Budget 2019: no deal before the end of the conciliation period

Sudan Partnership Conference: EU mobilises more support for Sudan’s transition

MWC 2016 LIVE: T-Mobile US reveals 5G trial plans

Parliament cuts own spending to facilitate agreement on EU budget

Foreign Affairs Council (Trade) of 22/05/2018: EU relations with key trading partners

EU mobilises €21 million to support Palestine refugees via the UN Relief and Works Agency

These photos show some of the world’s smallest things massively magnified

More Stings?

Advertising

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s