CGD would fall into foreign hands if privatised says CEO

 In Banks, News

The CEO of Caixa Geral de Depósitos, Paulo Macedo said this week that if the public bank were to be privatised, it would immediately fall into the hands of overseas shareholders because Portugal does not have the capital to keep the bank’s ownership wholly in Portuguese hands.

Speaking in Braga, and according to Expresso and the news agency Lusa, Macedo said: “There are those who say that Caixa should be privatised. That would mean that Caixa would immediately fall partly into the hands of overseas (investors) because there isn’t enough capital in Portugal to plough €10Bn and then some to match Caixa’s own capital”, he said.
At the opening of the latest edition of Meetings out of the Caixa (A pun on meetings ‘out of the box’ since ‘caixa’ also means box in Portuguese) he admitted that Portugal needed more foreign investment because it didn’t have “own capital”.
Paulo Macedo highlighted the bank’s performance in the European stress tests, emphasising that this would have been an “unimaginable performance” for a European bank – any European bank – three, 10 or 15 years ago.
“No one thought that a Portuguese bank would be in first place and at the same time manage to increase its ratings,” he said adding: “Caixa thankfully not only achieved good results, but also came top in terms of reputation.
Caixa Geral de Depósitos enjoyed record profits of €1.291Bn in 2023, up 53% on the €843 million obtained in 2022.