Banks: Icesave cash clash
23 July 2009
Dutch foreign minister Maxime Verhagen “taps Iceland for Icesave payouts”, headlines the NRC Handelsblad. The Dutch evening paper reports that Iceland’s parliament might reject the deal its government made last month with The Netherlands and the UK: Reykjavik would have to repay over €4 billion, the amount Amsterdam and London disbursed to customers of online bank Icesave during the crisis – plus interest. The deal is controversial in Iceland.
“This could not have come at a worse time,” observes NRC, seeing as on 16 July the selfsame parliament voted in favour of EU accession talks. “So this country is liable to be a doubtful partner,” opines the Dutch paper. “No wonder Verhagen gave his opposite number Skarphedisson to understand, in not very diplomatic terms, that Iceland’s accession is out of the question if it fails to respect its financial obligations.”