Morten Bjørnsen of Glitnir Bank ASA in Norway put a positive spin on the move, claiming it was a strength to get the Icelandic state as majority owner.
“This will ensure the bank necessary liquidity in a time of great turbulence in the international financial markets,” Bjørnsen said. “It will give security to customers and for the future.”
The Icelandic state took over 75 percent of the bank’s shares after injecting the equivalent of EUR 600 million into the bank.
The bank has operations in 10 countries including Norway, where its deposits are covered by the Bankgarantifond that insures all bank deposits up to NOK 2 million (about USD 370,000).
The Icelandic government said operations will continue as before and that the state didn’t intend to be a long-term shareholder.