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NBU’s Official Statement Regarding Potential Investor for SENSE BANK JSC

NBU’s Official Statement Regarding Potential Investor for SENSE BANK JSC

Considering the public interest to the topic, the NBU comments on the statement made in the mass media by Simeon Djankov, a proxy who was delegated the voting right on shares of sanctioned qualifying holders of SENSE BANK JSC (formerly ALFA-BANK JSC)

  1. The NBU did not give any instructions to Mr Djankov to hold negotiations to search for potential investors for Sense Bank. In April 2022, the NBU appointed Simeon Djankov a proxy who received the voting right on shares indirectly owned by sanctioned qualifying holders of SENSE BANK JSC and the right to participate in management of the bank.

Frequently mentioned in the interview points that the regulator set certain tasks to Mr Djankov to “reduce the share of persons under sanctions among shareholders” and “search for an investor” are not true and are a manipulation that can misinform readers.

  1. To their written application to the NBU, Mr Djankov and Mr Shpek received a substantive reply saying that, considering sanctions imposed by the EU Council on Mikhail Fridman and Petr Aven, as well as sanctions imposed by the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine on Mikhail Fridman, Petr Aven, and Andrey Kosogov, all of the said persons were deprived of the right to dispose of their assets and alienate them in any way before the sanctions are lifted.

The provided reply clearly implies that Ukrainian laws do not envisage any authorization mechanisms for persons under sanctions to exercise rights to alienate the bank’s shares before such sanctions are lifted.Therefore, there are no grounds for the planned “meetings at the NBU and the Presidential Office” that were mentioned in the interview.

  1. The NBU has indeed received a letter from a potential investor and provided a substantive response. In addition, we once again remind the representatives of the bank that in accordance with Article 34 of the Law of Ukraine On Banks and Banking (the Banking Law), a legal person or an individual who intends to acquire a qualifying holding in a bank is obliged to inform the National Bank of Ukraine about such intentions and concurrently submit a full set of required documents to the NBU.

The NBU has not received the documents required under the Banking Law and NBU’s regulations from any individuals or legal entities willing to acquire a qualifying holding in the bank.The laws and regulations clearly define how a bank and a regulator should communicate regarding these matters and do not provide for any other form of appeal or negotiation. As with the potential capital increase of the bank by USD 1 billion, we confirm that the NBU has not received the required set of documents for consideration.

  1. As to the concerns regarding the growing state's share in the banking sector, we note that the increase is caused primarily by some economic conditions during the war, and is a necessary and temporary response to them. The full-scale war unleashed by russia against Ukraine is an unprecedented and tragic event, and we must overcome its challenges.

During the numerous meetings and negotiations with international colleagues, we have repeatedly discussed the situation in the banking system, including potential scenarios of future development and the means to maintain financial stability. We can attest to their complete understanding.

  1. Potential nationalization of any systemically important bank will be considered by the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine according to the law and in the manner established by it.
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