Greece begins to absorb Cyprus bank branches

Greece has begun proceedings to absorb the subsidiaries of three Cyprus banks which are active in Athens, the Greek finance ministry said on Friday.

“The procedure for the acquisition of Cypriot banks in Greece by a Greek banking group has begun in cooperation with the Cyprus central bank,” a ministry statement said without identifying the Greek group in question.

This process guarantees the stability of the Greek banking system and deposits of Greeks in the Cypriot subsidiaries, it added.

The announcement was made following a phone conversation between Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras and Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades, a statement by the Cypriot presidency said.

The Nicosia statement “expressed thanks” to Athens and said the deal was made “with the most beneficial terms under the circumstances and with an important benefit for the Cypriot side.”

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