Business & Economy

Swiss finance minister compares Credit Suisse chiefs to ‘arsonists’

Geneva/Singapore, May 26 (EFE).- Switzerland’s finance minister on Friday denied any government responsibility for the crisis that almost saw the Credit Suisse bank collapse in March and compared the bank’s management to “arsonists.”

“You have to be careful not to confuse firefighters and arsonists,” Karin Keller-Sutter said in an interview with several Swiss media outlets. “The board of directors and executive board are responsible for Credit Suisse – and not the government.”

Keller-Sutter added that on March 19, the day the embattled bank was rescued by its domestic rival UBS, Credit Suisse asked the government for 170 billion francs of loans.

The Swiss National Bank agreed to save Credit Suisse from collapse with 200 billion francs in liquidity support, more than half of which was backed by the State.

The finance minister added that Credit Suisse owes the state 50 billion francs as part of the public rescue, a debt that has been reduced by half since April and that “should be repaid soon”, Keller-Sutter added.

In other news, a Credit Suisse group unit was ordered on Friday to compensate billionaire and former Georgian prime minister Bidzina Ivanishvili by a Singapore court.

According to the ruling Credit Suisse Trust has been ordered to pay Ivanishvili $926 million in damages, minus deductions for an earlier $79.4 million settlement, for failing to protect the billionaire’s assets.

The Singapore International Commercial Court said the Credit Suisse subsidiary “misappropriated many millions of dollars” over a nine-year period. Efe


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