According to Ziarlu Financial, citing a document sent by the Ministry of Economy and Finances to the Government last week, CEC Bank will remain state-owned for at least another 4 years, with a decision on resuming the privatisation process and the asset sale method to be taken after 2011, two years after the initial deadline proposed by the government and bank management. The privatisation of CEC Bank will be decided after completion of a restructuring programme in the bank, aimed at regaining a leading position in the Romanian market .
Our view: We view this news positively, as no new international strategic investor is expected to acquire the bank, which has the broadest branch network (1,400 offices), soon. Thus far, the bank was constantly losing market share, and the state strategy wasn’t successful. We expect the news to be positive for the Romanian banks and Erste Bank.