Banca d’Italia, Italy’s central bank, has taken provisional control of Italian-Arab Banca UBAE it said in a statement.The central bank is acting in accordance with the UN security council resolution and a regulation adopted by the EU which call for a freeze on Libyan assets after Muammar Qaddafi’s violent backlash on his own people.
The move follows Italy’s UniCredit SpA which released a statement on March 11 declaring that it would freeze the rights of Libyan shareholders in compliance with international regulations.
Rome-based Banca UBAE which manages payments of Libya’s energy exports, will continue regular activities but will be entrusted to external bodies that will operate under the supervision of the central bank.
Libyan Foreign Bank has a 68% stake in Banca UBAE and the Central Bank of Libya (CBL) is also a controlling shareholder. Both banks are under Qaddafi’s control and are reported to be a potential source of funding for his regime.