Sándor Csányi, CEO of OTP, is looking at options on how to wind down the bank’s Russian business
According to a Reuters report, Hungary’s OTP Bank is under pressure from the government of Ukraine, where the bank is also present, to sell its Russian unit, Chief Executive Sándor Csányi said on Wednesday.
The Hungarian bank is willing to sell its Russian operations if it can find a suitable buyer. Its Russian and Ukrainian units accounted for 15.8 percent of its profits last year. OTP is gradually winding down corporate lending in Russia in compliance with international sanctions and was examining a possible withdrawal from the Russian market.
Csányi said OTP faced no particular pressure in Hungary to seize is operations in Russia, however, he added that “in this regard, we are mainly cautioned by the Ukrainian government on a regular basis, by leaders of various rankings”.
OTP’s Russian unit is valued at around half a billion euros, which makes it difficult to find a suitable and solvent enough bidder. The bank is realistic about the possible sales prospects and is willing to take some loss on the sales but in Csányi’s view, prospects for the Russian economy are “not very bright.” He also referred to a law currently being drafted in Ukraine that plans to impose higher taxes on companies present in Russia, and said that this will also have to be factored in to their decisions.
Featured Image: MTI/Mohai Balázs