Sabadell is not afraid of Competition sanctions for the commercialization of ICO credits


César González-Bueno, CEO of Sabadell, at the Menéndez Pelayo University in Santander.

The CEO of Banco Sabadell, César González-Bueno, sees it as “logical” to review the management of the banking system with ICO loans —which the Government launched to reinforce the liquidity of companies affected by the pandemic—, but has defended that his entity has done “extraordinarily well” for what he expected “with optimism” the report of the National Commission of Markets and Competition (CNMC) on the management of the bank in relation to these credits.

The chief executive of Sabadell, an entity that together with Santander, CaixaBank and Bankia, is being investigated for placing its own products together with ICO loans, commented that the first internal analyzes of the entity show that the regulations have been complied with. This is what he pointed out during the seminar The economics of the pandemic organized by APIE and BBVA at the Menéndez Pelayo International University (UIMP) of Santander, where it ruled out abusive practices in the management of publicly guaranteed loans.

“I think it has been done extraordinarily well, what happens is that it is a very important distribution and, then, it is logical to review that it has been done in accordance with adequate regulations,” he explained. González-Bueno has pointed out that checks have been made during and after the execution of the ICO loans, with samples that, for the moment, reflect “very satisfactory” initial results in terms of compliance with the regulations.

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For this reason, the CEO of Sabadell has asked “patience” to see how the external analysis of the CNMC evolves, from which it will be deduced whether the bank has indeed acted correctly in the management of said credits. Specifically, it investigates the link to different products that banks would have required as a condition for customers to be able to access the ICO Covid guarantee lines. In addition, it analyzes the use of credits as a mechanism to restructure pre-existing financial debts.

Pardons: “Let normalcy return”

The CEO of Banco Sabadell, has assured, when asked about an assessment of the pardons to the prisoners of the you process Catalan, that “everything that is aimed at normality is good”, since it “gives peace of mind” to both consumers and companies and “any progress is good”.

“Coexistence is good, normality is good, and what we who occupy positions in economic entities, rather than political or social, have to limit ourselves to is simply everything that is aimed at normality,” he said. However, when asked about a possible return of the entity to Catalonia, González-Bueno has refused to make statements in this regard. The entity moved its headquarters from Barcelona to Alicante in October 2017, in full escalation of tension over the holding of the independence referendum in Catalonia.

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