November 20, 2018 / 10:53 AM / 10 months ago

UPDATE 1-Moldova cenbank chief resigns after return to financial stability

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CHISINAU, Nov 20 (Reuters) - Moldovan Central Bank Governor Sergiu Cioclea has submitted a letter of resignation to parliament, saying on Tuesday the country had returned to financial stability and implemented difficult reform.

“I submitted to the speaker of the parliament, Andrian Candu, a statement of my resignation,” Cioclea said, adding he hoped to leave office by Nov. 30.

“The Moldovan banking system has been brought out of crisis, it is sufficiently recapitalised and does not represent dangers and threats to the economy, economic entities, and most importantly, the population,” he told reporters.

Cioclea took office in April 2016 in the wake of a banking scandal that plunged the eastern European country into political and economic turmoil.

Since then the central bank, backed by the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, has sought to bring more transparency into the financial system and tackle corruption.

Moldova plunged into crisis after the disappearance of $1 billion from three banks with opaque ownership structures between 2012-2014.

Known locally as the “theft of the century”, the scandal triggered street protests, the leu currency plunged to record lows and inflation climbed into double digits. (Reporting by Alexander Tanas; Writing by Matthias Williams; Editing by Alison Williams)

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