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ABLV Bank’s manager claims the bank is ready for cancellation of payment restrictions

Publicity photo.
ABLV Bank is ready for cancellation of payment restrictions, said the bank’s chairman Ernests Bernis during a press-conference on Thursday, 22 February.

«Our internal view and position – yes, we are ready,» said Bernis, answering the question if the bank is ready for cancellation of payment restrictions.

He mentioned during a press-conference that the bank has done a lot, as well as sell a significant portion of its securities portfolio, creating major reserves of free money.

He also informed that the bank has received applications for deposits worth more than EUR 420 million in the past three days. «Our clients are loyal and their trust is unbelievable. In three days we have received more than 1,000 applications from our clients for deposits worth more than EUR 420 million,» said Bernis.

He also said that ABLV Bank is one of the better capitalized banks in Latvia – its capital adequacy ratio is 21.6%, whereas minimum requirement is 13.75%. Its liquidity index is 78.5%.

Bernis added that ABLV Bank’s loan portfolio is also close to EUR 1 billion.

He also mentioned that his bank has also developed a plan for future activities. The bank now awaits the conclusion from the regulator.

«We are doing all we can to ensure the bank’s stability and restore payments,» said Bernis, adding that the bank continues working to ensure access to its owned funds.

In accordance with instructions from European Central Bank, FCMC decided to establish restrictions on ABLV Bank’s debit transactions in any currency on Saturday, 18 February.

US Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) plans to apply sanctions against ABLV Bank for money laundering schemes that were used to circumvent sanctions against North Korea and assist with the country’s nuclear arms programme, as well assist with illegal activities in Azerbaijan, Russia and Ukraine.

The report published by FinCEN details that until 2017 the management of ABLV Bank had been using bribery to influence officials in Latvia in an attempt to avoid legal action and threats to its high-risk operations.

ABLV Bank’s representatives had previously noted that the report is a proposal from the US department. Objections can be submitted in written form within 60 days. The bank searches for opportunities to convince FinCEN to reconsider its proposals.

The bank claims it has never given bribes to officials. What FinCEN has said about the bank is completely unacceptable.


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