MAPUTO, The liquidators of the failed Mozambican bank, O Nosso Banco, (Our Bank) have promised that enough money is now available from the sale of assets to pay off all the bank’s creditors and depositors.

According to a report by the independent television station, STV, the liquidators have about 1.3 billion meticais (21.3 million US dollars) available to reimburse all the creditors. This includes all the taxes owed to the State, any compensation owing to former workers at the bank, suppliers of goods and services, and the 5,700-odd depositors.

Right at the back of the queue are the Nosso Banco shareholders. The two main shareholders are both public bodies — the National Social Security Institute (INSS), with 77.2 per cent of the equity, and the electricity company, EDM, with 16.3 per cent.

Nosso Banco was one of the smallest banks in the country. It had just three branches and eight ATMs, all of them in Maputo. More than 5,000 individuals and 700 companies and other institutions held accounts at the bank.

The Bank of Mozambique decided in November 2016 to revoke the banking licence granted to Nosso Banco, which inevitably led to its dissolution and liquidation.

A statement at the time from the central bank said Nosso Banco’s financial situation had been characterized by a continuous degradation of the main prudential and profitability indicators, particularly weak capitalisation, an unsustainable economic and financial structure, as well as serious problems of liquidity and management.

Under Bank of Mozambique rules, the solvency ratio of any commercial bank should have been at least eight per cent, but the solvency ratio of Nosso Banco had fallen to below zero.

Compensation was initially paid to depositors out of the Deposit Guarantee Fund (FGD) but this only covered individual depositors with accounts in meticais, and the compensation was restricted to 20,000 meticais per depositor.

Following the sale of all Nosso Banco assets, and the collection of debts owed to the bank, the liquidating commission, headed by the consultancy and auditing company Deloitte and Touche, is in a position to repay the FGD, and to reimburse all depositors the full amount of the money they held in the bank.

Creditors can now go to the liquidators and collect their money as from next Monday.