Business World

Tuesday 21 November 2017

Belgium takes control of local arm of debt-ridden bank, Dexia

THE Belgian government will take total control of the local arm of the troubled Franco-Belgian bank Dexia in a €4bn deal, according to Prime Minister Yves Leterme.

France, Belgium and Luxembourg said earlier they had reached a deal to dismantle Dexia, the first victim of the euro zone debt crisis in mainland Europe.

In Paris, the board said in a statement that the government takeover of Dexia Bank Belgium was in the "social interest" of the group.

Leterme told a news conference, after a cabinet meeting, that the takeover of Dexia Bank Belgium would "make secure" the retail bank and free it from "any risks resulting from the environment within parent body Dexia SA".

"Households can be sure and certain that their money is safe in their current accounts," he said, adding that "the taxpayer will not be called on to contribute too much as the risk is under control and the cost of the operation is relative."

Finance Minister Didier Reynders told the press conference that the €4bn offer for Dexia Bank Belgium was "reasonable".

"With this agreement the wish of the Belgian government is not to remain indefinitely in control of its bank nor to leave rapidly but to ensure its continuity," he said.

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