Athens Digest 11.05.2018

• Centeno’s letter rings bell in Athens

• Energy regulator seeks end to electricity bill spat

• Reduction of ELA and NPEs for Pireaus Bank in 2018 Q1

• Oxfam offices attacked in Athens

# President Centeno’s summing up letter to the Eurozone finance ministers regarding the results of the Eurogroup meeting in Sofia is reportedly ringing a bell in Athens. The goal of reaching a technical agreement (SLA) by May 24th puts stiff charts, while the Prime Minister’s office is already pushing ministers to speed up. The Commission’s proposal for an “enhanced supervision tool” which was discussed in Sofia is highlighted in Greek media.

# The Regulatory Authority for Energy has issued a warning to the Greek Post Office, following complaints that it was delaying transfers to the Public Power Corporation of money it received from electricity bill payments. The Authority threatened to seek penalties against the Post Office unless immediate corrective action is taken. PPC raised the issue with the authority following complaints from customers, some who have been disconnected despite having paid their bill.

# Piraeus Bank released its 2018 Q1 results. According to them:
-ELA reduced to EUR1bn area in mid-May 2018; full elimination expected in the near term
-Profitable Q1.18, with EUR32m recurring bottom-line for Greek operations
-NPEs reduced by EUR3.0bn yoy and €5.6bn from peak in Sep.15; €0.7bn down in Q1.18
-Deposits in Greece up by EUR3.4bn yoy and by EUR0.5bn in Q1.18 at EUR41.4bn

Referring to the Q1 results and also to the recently published stress tests, the bank’s CEO Christos Megalou said: “The outcome of the 2018 EU-Wide Stress Test published on 5 May 2018 signals the end of a long period of uncertainty for the Greek banking sector. The results confirm that the market environment in Greece is tangibly improving, even under the assumptions applied in such a robust regulatory exercise. For Piraeus Bank, in particular, the results of the Stress Test reflect the significant efforts that we have undertaken to transform the Bank at all levels. This is most evident in the “baseline” scenario, under which the Bank reached a Common Equity Tier 1 ratio of 14.5%.”

# Anarchist group ‘Rubicon’ has attacked the central Athens offices of Oxfam in response –as claimed- to sexual abuse and misconduct scandals that have rocked the UK charity. The group posted an online video showing its members kicking over office furniture, throwing computers on the ground, and spraying red paint on the walls of the offices.

On our Radar: Spanish referee for Greek Cup
Greece’s Football Federation has appointed a Spanish referee for the Greek Cup final between champions AEK Athens and PAOK on Saturday. David Fernandez Borbalan and two Spanish assistants were named for the match at the Olympic Stadium in Athens, which will be heavily policed following a season repeatedly marred by violence. Controversial referee decisions, and the underlying suspicion among fans of corruption, often trigger violent incidents.Greece is still facing the threat of suspension from international football by governing body FIFA _ dubbed in the news media as “football Grexit” _ unless the Greek federation, clubs, and the government implement a series of promised reforms.