As reported by Censor.NET, Kolomoiskyi's statement has been wired by UNIAN agency. Below is the text in full, translated from Russian by UNIAN:
"In this difficult time for the former shareholders, I would like to share a brief comment on the nationalization of PrivatBank, articulated in the three theses.
1. I would like to thank the Cabinet of Ministers and particularly [Prime Minister] Volodymyr Hroisman. As you know, in the wake of the latest wave of panic among clients, provoked primarily by the activity of the NBU [the National Bank of Ukraine], we were forced to come up to the Cabinet with the proposal that PrivatBank should be taken over by the state. I think that the Prime Minister and his team have shown real courage by taking this difficult decision. If they had not taken this step, this would have jeopardized the entire financial system of Ukraine.
2. PrivatBank has fallen victim to the NBU's arbitrariness. PrivatBank had a well-balanced, secured loan portfolio, verified by an international audit. But the NBU, by constantly changing its own regulations, invented new and different ways to artificially reduce the bank's capitalization. Then they began to talk about a mythical gap of UAH 150 billion, 97% of related party loans, about the fact that all the money had been stolen or siphoned off into the tax havens. Yet, these were the figures they received as a result of free changing of the accounting policy. Good central banks would help banks amid such hardships as an economic crisis, war or occupation. But our regulator has utilized all methods at hand to make PrivatBank go broke. And, unfortunately, they have succeeded.
3. The most important thing is that the bank's clients have not been affected by the decision. No matter how hard and bitter it was, we kept in mind throughout all the negotiations that the most important thing is PrivatBank's clientele. It's ridiculous to hear statements alleging that Kolomoiskyi had been blackmailing, threatening someone with PrivatBank's collapse. We had been defending our bank to the last, to the very moment we saw this could pose a threat to the clients. As for the rest, history will put everything in its place. Well, and to end on a positive note, I will express hope that the new shareholder represented by the state and the new board chaired by Mr. [Oleksandr] Shlapak will comply with the benchmark set by PrivatBank, find common language with all the clients of the bank, maintain and raise its high standards. I hope that the new management will be able not only to mark the bank's 25th anniversary at a worthy level, but also to lay the foundation for the celebration of its semi-centenary anniversary. I thank you for your attention."
On Dec. 18, the Cabinet of Ministers announced its decision to nationalize Privatbank, the largest privately-held bank of Ukraine. The government intends to issue 30-year domestic government loan notes worth 150 billion hryvnia ($5.54 billion) and become a 100-percent owner of the bank. The bank's first deputy CEO announced the decision was made after an unprecedented information attack on the bank and a threat it posed to its clients. The bank's leadership assured the clients their savings will be safe, naming it the key condition in the talks. In his turn, Minister of Finance Oleksandr Danyliuk confirmed the clients' money will be safe and protected by the state. Due to the nationalization procedure, Privatbank halted corporate transactions for one day, till 9 a.m. Dec. 20.
According to the National Bank of Ukraine, Privatbank needs 148 billion hryvnia in additional capitalization. The finance minister said that after Privatbank is stabilized, the state plans to sell it. In turn, President Poroshenko said the state guarantees safety and integrity of the client's funds.
On Dec. 19, the National Bank of Ukraine allocated 15 billion hryvnia to maintain the liquidity of Privatbank.
The decision on the Privatbank nationalization has been supported by IMF, EBRD, the G7 countries, the EU and the U.S.
Minister Danyliuk claims the bank was made insolvent and those guilty should be held accountable.
The Ministry of Finance will issue treasury bonds worth 116.8 billion hryvnia to refinance Privatbank. According to NBU Head Hontarieva, the amount will be attributed as a public debt.
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