Proposed purchase of Westpac Corporation’s operations in Solomon Islands by Bank South Pacific of Papua New Guinea has been delayed.
Expectations were for all necessary statutory, regulatory and third party approvals to be completed with full transactions, June 2015.
BSP early this year announced it had entered into a proposed sales agreement to purchase Westpac’s operations in Solomon Islands, Samoa, Tonga, Cook Islands and Vanuatu.
BSP Chairman Sir Kostas Constantinou, Kt. had confirmed and announced the completion of the purchase of Westpac Banking Corporation’s operations in Samoa, Tonga and Cook Islands for AUD$91m.
“The transaction was subject to regulatory approval by the Bank of Papua New Guinea and respective regulators in each country with all necessary approvals received,” he said.
The proposal however was not completed for Westpac Corporation’s operations in Solomon Islands and Vanuatu.
“Given the impact of Cyclone Pam in Vanuatu, the proposed sale of Westpac’s Vanuatu operations will not proceed at this time.
“Cyclone Pam devastated Vanuatu one month after the proposed sale was announced.
“Similarly, the proposed sale of Westpac’s Solomon Islands operations will not proceed at this time.
“BSP and Westpac are continuing consultation with the Central Bank of Solomon Islands in order to obtain all necessary statutory, regulatory and third party approvals.”
BSP Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Robin Fleming said the recent completion of transactions for Samoa, Tonga and Cook Islands was a milestone.
“This transaction is a major milestone for a Papua New Guinean Bank.
“BSP is committed to our customers, our people and the communities we operate in.
“This is a special time considering so many of our fellow Pacific Island sportsmen and women are also attending the XV 2015 Pacific Games in Port Moresby, of which BSP is proud to be the Official Sponsor.”
By BRADFORD THEONOMI