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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

A New State Bank?

Many Russian citizens would probably be surprised to know that up until spring last year, large [government] acquisitions were still being carried out, namely a 16 percent share of bank Natsionalny Kredit -- whose head was the same Oleg Boiko who sold off parts of the ill-fated Olbi [bank] to all comers.

In contrast with the Olbi situation, there was no media uproar in the [Natsionalny Kredit] case. The government simply bought the bank with taxpayers' money and that was that ... The Finance Ministry, in the name of the state, and First Deputy Finance Minister Andrei Vavilov, in the name of the Finance Ministry, signed an agreement with Natsionalny Kredit last April to take over Oleg Boiko's 16 percent share (40 billion rubles, or $8.45 million) of Natsionalny Kredit. One deputy minister, in the government's name, signed his name to a piece of paper and we all became a little bit poorer -- the bank's current situation is such that we might as well forget about these billions of rubles once and for all.

Even if the bank had been prosperous, it is absolutely unfathomable why the government needed to buy 16 percent of a commercial bank. Doesn't the government have enough of these banks ... at its disposal already?