Ukraine president's office sees no reason to hand PrivatBank back to former owners

FILE PHOTO: Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelenskiy speaks during a news conference in Riga, Latvia October 16, 2019. REUTERS/Ints Kalnins

KIEV (Reuters) - The office of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said on Wednesday there was no reason to hand PrivatBank to its former shareholders, no matter what the outcome of court decisions might be.

Zelenskiy’s chief of staff Andriy Bogdan conveyed that message in a meeting with the Group of Seven (G7) ambassadors in Kiev, according to a statement.

Investors are closely watching the fate of PrivatBank, Ukraine’s largest lender, which was nationalized in 2016 against the wishes of its main owner Ihor Kolomoisky. Kolomoisky is fighting court cases to reverse the nationalization. He and Zelenskiy have longstanding business ties.

Reporting by Natalia Zinets; writing by Matthias Williams; editing by Chris Reese