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mozabanco.co.mz (File photo) / The headquarters of Moza Banco in Maputo
Mozambique’s central bank injected around eight billion meticais (EUR 104 million) into Moza Banco to halt its collapse and prevent “an earthquake” in the Mozambican financial system, the governor of the financial system supervisor has revealed.
“If we had stopped [capitalising Moza Banco], we would have had an earthquake, a tsunami. [Because the bank] penetrated companies and families, there would have been an unprecedented melée of depositors and creditors,” Rogério Zandamela told a press conference after yesterday’s meeting of the bank’s Monetary Policy Committee of the Bank of Mozambique.
According to Zandamela, the money injected into Mozambique’s fourth largest banking institution by the Bank of Mozambique since September will be reimbursed once the institution is sold or recapitalized.
“This punctual intervention was in the public good and lent tranquillity to the system. Without it, there would have been costs of incalculable dimensions. It is frightening when such an institution goes bankrupt,” Zandamela said.
The central bank announced last September that it was suspending Moza Banco’s board of directors and executive committee to “protect the interests of depositors”.
“The financial and prudential situation of Moza Banco, SA has been degrading unsustainably,” it said, which made it necessary to “strengthen the extraordinary restructuring measures” provided for by law to “protect the interests of depositors and other creditors”, safeguarding “the normal operation conditions of the banking system”, the central bank said at the time.
Earlier this month, Banco de Moçambique announced that it would appoint an evaluation committee and set up a general meeting for the recapitalisation or sale of Moza, following the submission of a report from consultancy KPMG.
At this stage, Alberto Bila,a manager at the Bank of Mozambique, said that “it would be premature” to move forward if Moza was close to sale or recapitalisation by the current shareholders.
Speaking to reporters yesterday on the sidelines of a book launch about small and medium-sized enterprises in Mozambique, João Figueiredo, appointed by the Bank de Mozambique to head Moza Banco, said that the audit was in its final phase.
“In this study, we will determine what the adjustments are to be to the accounts and financial statements of the bank and, after that, we will determine the capital increase necessary to bring about the desired tranquillity,” Figueiredo said, without indicating whether the decision pointed to sale or rather recapitalisation.
Founded in 2008, Moza is 50.9 percent owned by Mozambique Capitals and 49 percent by the Portuguese Novo Banco.
Two months after the intervention in Moza, the bank supervisor liquidated O Nosso Banco, owned by the National Social Security Institute (INSS), and activated the deposit guarantee fund, which provides for a reimbursement of only 20,000 meticais (EUR 240.00) for individual depositors, excluding companies.
Despite being a small concern, O Nosso Banco’s bankruptcy sounded alarms, prompting the central bank to issue statement assuring the public that the financial system was sound, with an average solvency ratio of 14 percent, well above the 8 percent required by the supervisory body.
Unlike O Nosso Banco, which had little more than 5,000 private and 900 company depositors and only a one percent share of the banking system’s assets, Moza has more than 93,000 private and 8,000 corporate customers and a 7.71 percent share, making it the fourth largest Mozambican bank, with 48 branches across the country.Source: Lusa