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Oct 7, 2014

Bulgarian president warns against new elections

SOFIA, Oct 7 (Reuters) – Bulgaria’s president and business
leaders urged politicians on Tuesday to agree on a new
government and avoid another election after a weekend snap poll
delivered a messy result that raises the threat of further
instability in the Balkan nation.

The centre-right GERB party won Sunday’s election but fell
dozens of seats short of a majority, setting the stage for weeks
of difficult talks with potential allies to cobble together
Bulgaria’s fifth government in two years. One GERB official
warned of another vote by Christmas if the talks fail.

Oct 6, 2014

Bulgaria election winner ready to form minority government

SOFIA, Oct 6 (Reuters) – The winner of Bulgaria’s general
election said on Monday it was ready to form a minority
government with the support of other parties, after a fractured
result that threatens more instability in the Balkan country.

Led by a former bodyguard and karate expert, the
centre-right GERB party won around a third of the vote but is
likely to find itself dozens of seats short of a majority. That
may leave Bulgaria, one of Europe’s poorest countries, with
another shaky coalition struggling to solve a bank crisis and
revive growth.

Oct 6, 2014

Rightist party wins Bulgaria election as vote splinters

SOFIA (Reuters) – Bulgaria’s center-right GERB party won a snap national election on Sunday but fell short of a majority, a result that could mean another shaky coalition struggling to solve a bank crisis and revive economic growth.

GERB leader Boiko Borisov, a former bodyguard and karate expert said his party would hold internal discussions on Monday on how to proceed. Exit polls pointed to a highly fractured result, setting the stage for days or weeks of haggling with smaller parties and the opposition.

Oct 5, 2014

Rightist party seen winning Bulgaria’s ‘last chance’ election

SOFIA (Reuters) – The center right GERB party looked set to win Bulgaria’s “last chance” snap general election on Sunday but will fall short of a majority, a result that could mean another shaky coalition struggling to solve a bank crisis and revive growth.

GERB’s leader, a former bodyguard and karate expert, warned it would be difficult to form a government in light of the exit poll results, but added his party would hold internal discussions on Monday on how to proceed.

Sep 30, 2014

Romania Raiffeisen CEO says consolidation is ‘unavoidable’

BUCHAREST (Reuters) – Consolidation in Europe’s banking sector is unavoidable and could partly be triggered by the current asset quality review (AQR) of European lenders, Raiffeisen Bank Romania CEO Steven van Groningen told Reuters.

Van Groningen said at the Reuters Eastern Europe Investment Summit that Raiffeisen could look at taking over a smaller local lender if the price was right and it presented good value, but such a decision would ultimately be up to the bank’s shareholders.

Sep 25, 2014

European Commission begins action against Bulgaria over bank crisis

BUCHAREST/SOFIA (Reuters) – The European Commission said on Thursday it was opening infringement procedures against Bulgaria over its bank crisis and expects customers at Corporate Commercial Bank (Corpbank) to be given immediate access to their deposits.

The Commission has sent a formal notice to Bulgaria, and Sofia has until Oct. 15 to respond.

Aug 11, 2014

Bulgaria’s Corpbank misses final bond payment -sources

LONDON, Aug 11 (Reuters) – Bulgaria’s Corporate Commercial
Bank (Corpbank) failed to make the final payment on a
dollar-denominated bond that matured on Friday, two bondholder
sources said, increasing the risk bondholders will take legal
action against the state.

A group of angry Corpbank depositors protested on Monday in
front of the central bank in Sofia, demanding access to their
accounts. Deposits have been frozen even though Bulgarian law
provides for a deposit guarantee of up to 100,000 euros.

Aug 5, 2014

Bulgaria to decide on Corpbank in mid-October: President

SOFIA, Aug 5 (Reuters) – Bulgarian authorities will take a
decision on what to do with Corporate Commercial Bank (Corpbank)
only after the results of an audit are known around
mid-October, President Rosen Plevneliev said on Tuesday.

The fate of Bulgaria’s fourth-largest lender has been in
limbo as efforts to rescue the bank were scuttled by the
outgoing parliament, dragging out the Balkan state’s worst
banking crisis since the 1990s. Authorities have estimated the
cost of a possible state rescue at around 1.5-2.0 billion levs
($1.0-1.4 billion).

Aug 5, 2014

Troubled Bulgaria names law professor as interim premier

SOFIA (Reuters) – A Bulgarian law professor and former Socialist lawmaker was named caretaker prime minister on Tuesday for two months as the Balkan state grapples with the fallout of its worst banking crisis since the 1990s.

Georgi Bliznashki, 57, took over as premier while Rumen Porozhanov, a 49-year-old former senior civil servant, will be finance minister, President Rosen Plevneliev said in a televised statement.

Jul 31, 2014

Exclusive: Bondholders may sue Bulgarian government over Corpbank default – sources

BUCHAREST (Reuters) – Holders of dollar-denominated bonds at Bulgaria’s Corporate Commercial Bank (Corpbank) 6C9.BB are gearing up for legal action against the government if the bond defaults and the bank is tipped into insolvency, two sources told Reuters on Thursday.

A default has looked increasingly likely after a run on deposits at Corpbank in June, which prompted the central bank to seize control of Bulgaria’s fourth-largest lender, shut down its operations and block depositors from taking out money.