"Mamuka Khazaradze and Badri Japaridze, Founding Partners of TBC Bank JSC were heard at the Fiscal Committee of the Parliament today and everyone was given an opportunity to ask questions and seek answers" stated MP Irakli Kovzanadze, Fiscal Committee Chair.
"Committee Hearings are not court sessions and they are not aimed at identifying who is right and who is wrong. Mr. Khazaradze and Mr. Japaridze have had an expectation that they would not be given an opportunity to be heard, but we secured it for them" added MP Kovzanadze.
At the same time, Fiscal Committee Chair noted that TBC Bank JSC is one of the leading banks of the country and entire region. Hence, it needs to be treated with care.
"TBC Bank JSC is a most significant financial institution and most important component of the financial system of the country. Being a Fiscal Committee Chair with a long track record in the banking sector, I believe it important to treat TBC Bank JSC with due care. It is a cornerstone issue, but I wish to note herewith that a joint statement of TBC Bank JSC and National Bank of Georgia (NBG) makes it all clear to me. Commercial bank shareholders have suspended a litigation, should pay a fine and independent directors will be solicited to the Supervisory Council, thus serving as a pre-requisite of its development, advancement of its corporate governance" concluded MP Kovzanadze.
As for the request of the opposition party MPs a invite the NBG Governor to a Fiscal Committee Hearing, MP Kovzanadze noted that he will act in line with the Rules and Regulations of the Parliament of Georgia.
The FINANCIAL -- National bank of Georgia has ordered TBC shareholders to remove the Chairman of the Supervisory Board, Mamuka Khazaradze and his deputy Badri Japaridze from the Supervisory Board. NBG motivated its decision by conflict of interests related to transactions in 2007-2008 being investigated by Prosecutor's office.
Khazaradze said during the last eight months there was the orchestrated campaign against him and Badri Japaridze, vice chairman, which ended with NBG's order, aimed to limit relation of founders with the bank.
Khazaradze responded in facebook post that one of the most famous law company DENTONS examined issue and concluded that there were no illegal operation or violation of law by TBC founders. Khazaradze thinks that the NBG's decision is linked to his business in ANAKLIA, multibillion project initiated by TBC, which attracted international funds.
TBC Bank, largest bank in Georgia was under investigation by the National Bank of Georgia (NBG) and the country’s office of public prosecution, concerning certain transactions that took place in 2007 and 2008.
The investigation alleges that certain transactions between TBC Bank’s unit, TBC Bank JSC, in Georgia and some entities were illegal, the group said.
The country’s central bank believes that these entities were related to the chairman and deputy chairman of TBC Bank Group, the company said, and the investigation alleges that these transactions were not in compliance with a Georgian law on the regulation of conflicts of interest.
A company spokesman identified current chairman and deputy chairman as Mamuka Khazaradze and Badri Japaridze, respectively, as the executives that NBG cited in its allegations.
Khazaradze was recently criticized by Georgia's shadow ruler, billionaire Ivanishvili, who claimed that TBC bank and Bank of Georgia monopolized local market and set unfair conditions for borrowers. He also said contributed to the conflict between state and business interest.
On 9 January, TBC Bank Group slammed ‘media portals‘, without specifying which ones, for conducting a ‘black PR campaign’ against the bank.
Leading business association in Georgia ICC defended TBC' Bank's interest and criticized the government. It said many businesses have been under attack by government structures in the past six years, the last episode being an attempt by the Prosecutor Office to harass, harm and undermine the largest financial institution in Georgia, TBC Bank.
ICC-Georgia said it stands fully by its member TBC Bank and calls on government to stop harassment of this institution in particular and of businesses in general.