Sound Banking Sector Paramount to Malta’s Economic Success

A sound banking sector is paramount to Malta’s economic success and therefore the Government is fully committed towards strengthening and supporting financial institutions with the view of encouraging further growth in the economy, said the Minister for Finance Prof. Edward Scicluna

edward_scicluna_mediterranean_bank_dingli_street_opening_(cm)40He was speaking during the official inauguration of Mediterranean Corporate Bank in Sliema on Thursday 18th December, alongside Mediterranean Bank Chairman Francis Vassallo, Mediterranean Bank CEO Mark Watson, and Mediterranean Corporate Bank CEO Charles Cini. The inauguration was followed by a tour of the premises.

In his address, Prof Scicluna explained that following the financial crisis, new regulations are obliging banks to contribute towards a Single Resolution Fund (SRF). He noted that to provide depositor protection for the interim period while the fund is built up, an amendment to the Local Loans Act was enacted in Parliament this week, in agreement with the Opposition.

This amendment will enable the Government to assist credit institutions faced with financial difficulties. Minister Scicluna reiterated that notwithstanding the robustness of this sector, this measure would provide and preserve financial stability.

“We are giving depositors a guarantee that we will do whatever is necessary in order to sustain a failing bank so as to protect its depositors,” Prof. Scicluna underlined, in line with the Single Resolution Mechanism regulatory principle that depositors should be protected first and foremost.


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Prof. Scicluna also said that thanks to the Joint Financial Stability Board between the MFSA and the Central Bank, the Government is able to keep constant oversight over the health of the banking sector, and ensure action by regulatory bodies to address issues that emerge before these escalate.

“The Government wants to put people’s minds at rest in that their deposits will be safe should a bank fail. We are following all regulatory best practices and ensuring oversight over all banking activities,” Prof. Scicluna emphasised.

Minister Scicluna also noted that during the years that Mediterranean Bank has been operating in Malta, it has opened six branches across the island and has a staff complement of 260.

He said that Mediterranean Bank has also invested in an online savings and investments platform for its local and Belgian retail customer base. Mediterranean Corporate Bank will now be focusing on the corporate market and will provide corporate financing solutions.

In his conclusion, Minister Scicluna stated that the fact that Mediterranean Bank has decided to expand its operations further, is a clear indication of its confidence in Malta’s growing economy and its commitment towards its customers and employees.


Thursday 18th December 2014


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