Greece plans German-style investment bank: report

16th September 2011, Comments 0 comments

Greece is hoping to set up a public investment bank along the lines of Germany's KfW, Athens' Economy Minister Michalis Chrysochoidis said in a magazine interview released Friday.

Greece "is in talks with the German government over how a Greek investment bank similar to the German KfW can be created," Chrysochoidis told Spiegel Online.

The plans could be ready within a few weeks, he added.

Germany's KfW ("Kreditanstalt fuer Wiederaufbau" or credit institute for reconstruction) was set up in 1948.

A state-owned bank that finances itself via the markets like commercial banks, it provides credits at attractive rates particularly to small and mid-sized companies. It also holds many of the share stakes that the state still holds in companies such as Deutsche Telekom or Deutsche Post.

Athens has committed itself to selling off around 50 billion euros ($69 billion) in state assets between now and 2015, a timetable which some have criticised as too slow.

But "it took years for many of the former state-run companies of the former East Germany," Chrysochoidis said.

© 2011 AFP

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