Central Bank of São Tomé and Príncipe puts bank in pre-bankruptcy up for sale

27 February 2018

The Banco Privado de São Tomé e Príncipe bank will be sold “totally or partially” in a public as it is in a pre-bankruptcy situation, the Central Bank of São Tomé and Príncipe (BCSTP) announced on Monday in São Tomé.

The BCSTP said in a statement accessed by Macauhub in São Tomé that “the public tender for the partial or total sale of assets, liabilities, and off-balance sheet assets,” of Banco Privado de São Tomé e Príncipe is open “with the aim of preserving the stability of the financial system and safeguarding the interests of depositors.”

The statement also said that banks may participate in the tender if they are authorised to be financial intermediaries and that proposals must be submitted to the Central Bank of São Tomé and Príncipe within a maximum of thirty days.

The launch of the tender comes two weeks after the Central Bank of São Tomé and Príncipe decided to temporarily intervene in BCSTP to “safeguard the interests” of customers and “ensure the stability of the system.”

The “pre-bankruptcy” situation of Banco Privado de São Tomé e Príncipe is fundamentally due to “the significant weaknesses in the management and diversification of its shareholder structure,” as well as recording “consecutive losses since 2013” among others reasons given by the Central Bank of São Tomé and Príncipe.

The BCSTP was founded after investors from Cameroon also decided to invest in Commercial Bank – Sao Tomé é Príncipe (COBSTP), a bank that went bankrupt and was placed under the intervention of the Central Bank of São Tomé and Príncipe.

In addition to the BCSTP, seven private commercial banks, namely Afriland First Bank, Banco Internacional de STP, BGFI-Bank, Ecobank, Island Bank, National Investment Bank and Energy Bank operate in the São Tomé financial system. (macauhub)

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