Bank of Cyprus has 650 clients ready to join ‘Estia’ special scheme provided by the government to vulnerable borrowers, informed sources told Phileleftheros.
The scheme contributes to the deleverage of Cypriot banks’ non-performing loans held by individuals and corporations and secured by a primary residence.
Following approval by the Council of Ministers last month, applications can be submitted as of September 2 and the deadline is November 15.
Bank of Cyprus data today allows for some 4,000 ‘Estia’ prospective clients. So far, there was communication with some 3,500, and about 3,400 or 96% have expressed interest to join the scheme.
A small percentage of clients who could become eligible for ‘Estia’ have yet to communicate with the Bank even though the scheme has been in the news for a long time.
Borrowers eligible to participate in the Scheme must first come to an arrangement with the Bank to restructure their loan. The total value of loans stands at €850 million and the average is some €200,000.
Bank of Cyprus started preparing for the scheme before the end of 2018, and has set up a special unit with two sub-divisions – one in Nicosia and the other in Limassol.
A staff of 30 will manage this specific portfolio, including the processing of applications and restructuring of facilities through ‘Estia’ scheme.
The Bank also supports the process through a call center and, if necessary, plans are in place so that the unit is reinforced to better serve additional potential customers.
In addition to Bank of Cyprus, Hellenic Bank, Alpha Bank, and non-banking asset management corporations such as the Housing Finance Corporation and Kedipes are expected to join ‘Estia’ scheme.
They now have to enter into a memorandum of understanding with the state. Once a memorandum has been signed, the second preparatory phase kicks in – a period of informing potentially eligible debtors about the scheme.