President of the Republic of Cyprus Nicos Anastasiades, referring to his decision to accept the Eurogroup agreement of March 15, told the Commission of Inquiry into how Cyprus’ economy and banking sector nearly collapsed that, faced with the choice of being likeable or useful, he opted to be useful.

He said any proposal for a haircut on deposits was a Eurogroup initiative adopted by the majority of the member states, which was also his answer to the German position that the proposal for a haircut of deposits under €100,000 was a Cypriot proposal.

The President noted that the decision for a bail-in was a decision that began from the G20 meetings and, due to the absence of timely measures, “they considered it was the right time to implement it.”

He said he was faced with the dilemma to say no for a few days or accept the proposal, noting that if there had been no support programme Cyprus would be bankrupt.

President Anastasiades referred to the consequences of a possible collapse of the banking system, the subsequent bankruptcy and exit from the Euro, which would also lead to a bad solution for the Cyprus problem. “I preferred to be useful rather than likeable,” he said.

The hearing has concluded.

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