Cyprus Property News magazine for overseas buyers & real estate investors

Monday, June 1, 2020

George Mountis BSc, MSc, Ph.D

Central Bank must do more to solve NPL problem

The Central Bank of Cyprus (CBC) must push for a greater volume and quality of loan restructurings in addition to halting the creation of new non-performing exposures, for which it has implemented a framework of objectives.

CHF loans: Another banking scandal?

Approximately 11,000 borrowers were granted loans denominated in Swiss francs (CHF) by banks in Cyprus and the billion Euro question is whether the banks communicated the risks.

Banking and real estate intertwined

The banking and real estate sectors in Cyprus are intertwined and the restoration of the health of the banking system is a vital necessity for the sustainable recovery of the real estate market.

The major problem of non-performing loans

Banks in Cyprus could secure the collection of significant parts of loans that are currently not being serviced by managing their non-performing loans more efficiently as Dr George Mountis explains.

What is a floating charge?

Land Registry searches in Cyprus occasionally reveal floating charges/mortgages as encumbrances lodged against the title of a property; in this article Dr George Mountis explains.

The recent property boom and bust cycle

The continuous increase in property prices created a false sense of security in Cypriot banks and led to further credit expansion and a real estate "bubble" which burst resulting in a large increase in non-performing loans.

Investment opportunities in Cyprus

In a question and answer session Dr George Mountis of Emergo Wealth discusses the opportunities for institutional investors who may be considering investing in the Cyprus real estate market.

Curing the non-performing loans disease

Following the implementation of an economic adjustment programme in a number of EU member states, different countries have adopted different strategies for dealing with non-performing loans.

Stemming the rise of non-performing loans

If the rise in non-performing loans is to be stopped, the Cypriot banks need to start thinking 'out of the box' and employ innovative approaches that can provide short and long-term solutions to the problem.

Housing loan rates down, business loan rates up

Although housing loan interest rates continued to fall in December, business loan rates increased reversing an earlier downward trend according to the latest statistics from the Cyprus Central Bank.

The state of our economy

Let's engage in some self-criticism, recognize our mistakes, and try to overcome the impasses, shedding old habits; and this goes for businesses and banks alike. It's time for us to change.

Cut interest rates, write off debt …

The Cyprus government must take a close look at the excessive household and business debt, and urgently raise the issue of possible debt write-offs, obviously under certain conditions and restrictions.

Loan rate cuts are a step in the right direction – BUT

The recent announcement by the island's 'big three' banks to lower interest rates are a step in the right direction, but problems remain and these rate reductions are not enough as George Mountis explains.

Why Bank of Cyprus should not be separated

Rather than establishing a separate Asset Management Company, it's likely that the Bank of Cyprus will set up a separate internal non-performing loan unit to pro-actively manage problematic loans.

Multiple creditors & foreclosures in Cyprus

A new directive for handling customers' debts has been issued by the Central Bank; however foreclosing on non-performing real estate loans and evictions is not in anyone's interests.

Deposit interest rates fall while loan interest rates rise

Although interest rates banks in Cyprus are paying their depositors have plummeted in recent times, the interest rates they are charging borrowers are increasing according to the European Central Bank.

How we could deal with the transfer of BoC assets

Depending on decisions taken for the future of the Bank of Cyprus, all collateral for problematic loans that have been granted in recent years will be transferred to the new entity, which will sell or rent the assets to repay the loan.

The MoU and its impact on banking and real estate

As the Cyprus economy has been in a downward spiral for two to three years, it would be unfair to argue that the MoU with our international lenders is responsible for the fall in property values and demand.

Redefinition of non-performing loans

Changes to the definition of non-performing loans to comply with European and IFRS accounting standards are necessary to restore Cyprus' credibility as a regional financial hub.

Bank accounts for all EU citizens

Europeans will have the right to open a basic bank account in any country of the EU, to switch bank accounts and see what fees they are being charged under a new Directive proposed by the European Commission.

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