Czech state to sue former government ministers over IPB takeover

The Czech Finance Ministry will sue members of the country’s government that in 2000 oversaw a takeover of the collapsing IPB bank by another bank, ČSOB, Finance Minister Miroslav Kalousek told reporters on Thursday. Mr Kalousek said that in 2000, the cabinet concluded a deal with the ČSOB bank that damaged the Czech Republic and eventually meant that the country lost on Wednesday a 33.3 billion crown, or 1.73 billion US dollars, claim against ČSOB. The Czech finance minister said a lawsuit would be filed against all but one of the ministers in the cabinet headed by Miloš Zeman along with the then head of the Czech central bank, Josef Tošovský, and the former trustee in bankruptcy of the IPB bank, Petr Staněk.

An arbitration tribunal in Paris rejected on Wednesday a 33.3 billion crown claim by the Czech state against ČSOB related to state guarantees provided during the 2000 takeover of the IPB bank. The tribunal also granted ČSOB a 1.6 billion crown award against the state, plus interest.

Author: Jan Richter