Marc Lauwers: “We have very little time to work everything out to, but 90 percent of our work is done. We are still waiting for the details of the legal texts. Elaborating these measures is extremely complex. In principle, deferral of interest payments is not legal, so a solution must already be found for this in the Royal Decree on support measures. And if a payment is delayed, alarm bells usually ring elsewhere in the company. We must continue to explore what this means for our operational chain, including the accounting impact of all this. ”
You are not satisfied with the way in which Minister of Finance Alexander De Croo communicated about the plan.
Lauwers: “The plan itself is ok, we are even happy to work on it. I was only sorry that this was again linked to the financial crisis, that it was said that now is the time for banks to support taxpayers. Not all institutions received government support during the crisis, and Argenta certainly did not. We have also paid billions in deposit taxes and contributions to the guarantee fund in recent years. I would also have liked the guaranteed return of 0.11 percent on savings books to be scrapped. That could have also freed up extra money to finance our economy. ”
Argenta was working hard on a new long-term strategy. Does it now have to go to the trash because of the corona crisis?
Lauwers: “Our future plan was 90 percent complete. But now we have decided to review everything from next week with the management committee. We do not intend to suddenly turn Argenta into a completely different company. That we have always remained recognizable has always been our strength. ”