ATHENS, May 14 (Reuters) - Greece’s government respects the independence of the central bank, the government spokesman said on Thursday, after a senior minister criticized central bank chief Yannis Stournaras for his role in winding down a small bank.
“The Greek government respects the Bank of Greece’s independence and ... seeks to have the best possible cooperation for the interests of the country and banking system,” Gabriel Sakellaridis told a news conference.
Stournaras’s relations with Greece’s new leftist government have come under scrutiny in recent days. Energy Minister Panagiotis Lafazanis this week was quoted as saying Stournaras’s role in winding down ATEbank - a small lender that gave loans to farmers - in 2012 was a “scandal”. (Reporting by Renee Maltezou and Angeliki Koutantou, Writing by Deepa Babington)