BOV chairman’s €90,000 a year income for a ‘part-time role’

Bank of Valletta’s chairman Gordon Cordina pocketed €90,277 last year from what he describes as a “part-time role for a limited period of engagement”, according to figures published in the bank’s latest annual report.

Research by The Shift shows that in addition to his €82,000 annual remuneration for his position as the chairman of Malta’s largest bank, Cordina also sits on two of the bank’s sub-committees, including the important Remunerations Committee, which boosts his income from BOV shareholders to more than €90,000 a year.

Since BOV owns half of Mapfre MSV Life Insurance, Cordina also sits on the insurer’s board, where he earns himself another handsome directorship fee.

The bank’s performance has been dismal over the past year, having been severely hit by self-inflicted scandals and poor decisions.

The Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit slapped the bank with a €2.6 million fine for anti-money laundering breaches, and it also reached a €182.5 million out of court for the Deiulemar debacle.

But, despite this, Cordina proposed and obtained approval at the bank’s last annual general meeting for a mandate to continue increasing his and his fellow directors’ remuneration over the coming years.

Reacting to the possible conflict of interest between his chairing of Malta’s biggest lender and his private economic consultancy, which produces reports and business proposals for many of the bank’s clients – including the government and its agencies as well as private companies. When contacted by The Shift this week, Cordina said it is a non-executive position on a part-time basis.

The remuneration package for his part-time job is almost double that of the prime minister.

Denying suggestions of a conflict of interest, the BOV chairman told The Shift, “There is no inherent conflict of interest between my role as non-executive chairperson of BOV and pursuing my profession as an economist in E-Cubed Consultants Ltd.”

Cordina described the undertaking of additional work by holders of non-executive board roles as “a typical arrangement”.

Cordina is not the first BOV chairman to have been allowed by regulatory authorities, mainly by the Malta Financial Services Authority – at the time under the stewardship of disgraced former CEO Joseph Cuschieri – to carry on with their private work despite a potential conflict of interest. The same has happened under Nationalist and Labour administrations alike.

Before Cordina, BOV chairmen had much lower financial packages due to the position being part-time.

The bank’s board met on a total of 17 occasions last year, which points to a staggering remuneration of almost €5,000 per board meeting for Cordina.

While Cordina attempts to downplay the chairman’s role as some sort of part-time undertaking, in reality, no decision of any importance is taken by the bank without the chairman’s approval.

Earlier this week, The Shift reported how Cordina, in his private capacity as owner of E-Cubed Consultants, is, by far, the Labour administration’s economic consultant of choice.

So much so that he has been handed dozens of direct orders for all types of studies – from how a power station should utilise its plants to surveys on tourism and consumption.

Between 2013 and 2022, Cordina’s company, which he owns with his partner, Stephanie Vella, was awarded 64 direct orders by the government and its agencies, receiving €1.4 million from the public coffers.

Cordina, who hails from a staunch Labour family with his father, Peter, having contested the MEP elections on the Labour ticket, started his career as the National Statistics Office director general during a Nationalist administration.

He resigned shortly after the then-Labour opposition started to criticise him.

His life partner, Stephanie Vella, was also recently appointed a governor of the MFSA, which is responsible, along with the European Central Bank, for regulating BOV.

Vella similarly downplayed any potential conflict of interest, stating that her roles in the public and private sector are “distinct from each other”.

It is a well-known fact, however, that Cordina is not an exception and that other board members also hold positions in the private sector while simultaneously having part-time roles on the bank’s board.

                           
                               
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Wayne
Wayne
1 month ago

So is the MFSA’s Executive Committee (Joseph Gavin, Michelle Mizzi Buontempo, Edwina Licari, Christopher Buttigieg, Michael Xuereb, Ivan Zammit) comfortable with such a situation? Don’t they see a clear conflict of interest? Oh, these same MFSA officials don’t publish their conflicts of interest! One wonders why! Join the dots.

Bruno
Bruno
1 month ago

To add insult to injury, a regulator (Malta Gaming Authority) dishes out direct order to Gordon Cordina, a Bank Chairman. And the MFSA officials just yawn! How can this be possible?
Joseph Cuschieri started giving direct orders to Gordon Cordina’s company, when he was CEO at MFSA. Funnily enough, this took place when Cordina was joining forces with Nexia BT!

Alfred Tonna
Alfred Tonna
1 month ago

All these thousands of euros paid annually by “Malta’s largest bank,” to individuals while us, poor depositors and users of this “Malta’s largest bank” what are we receiving? Only meagre interest’s on savings, ATM’s that are either empty or not functional and, the worst of all, the closure of branches such as happened in Floriana. This decision is causing great hardship’s to the Floriana residents which in general, has an aged population.

Where are the ‘Social obligations’ of ” Malta’s largest bank” to the communities of the various localities that have suffered the same fate as those of Floriana by seeing the BOV branches closing down!

To tell the honest truth, Floriana has also been abandoned both by HSBC and APS Banks. There is not one single Bank operating in that locality.

After having stated the above, someone might say “but than, why singling out BOV?” The answer is simple, because the Shift’s article is about one of the higher hierarchy of this particular Bank.

David
David
1 month ago

Mismanagement at the mercy of the shareholders. Share price is rock bottom and without dividend for a long time now. Shareholders lost a big part of their savings unfortunately. Besides that they employ incompetent people without the necessary qualifications. BOV is in shambles. Disgrace.

Carmelo Borg
1 month ago

U il GAHAN poplu u small investers that il mejda jiggieldu ghal frak ( mhux loqhom). LANQAS JISTHU MIN ALLA LI HOLOQHOM

Albert Bonnici
Albert Bonnici
1 month ago
Reply to  Carmelo Borg

100% right. U Lix shareholder jghidulu li ma kellhomx qliegh (ghax belawh kollu huma). Pajjiz tan n***k, inkludi MFSA.

Francis Said
Francis Said
1 month ago

Well it seems working Part-time is generously remunerated. The fact that he has and probably still does earn a generous amount in direct orders from this so called government.
Corruption = the rich getting richer, the poor getting poorer.
Certainly the Human Resources Section of the PL has a very innovative way of employment.

Out of Curiosity
Out of Curiosity
1 month ago

I am seriously thinking to boycott BoV, for so many reasons. This is the cherry on the cake.

Albert Mamo
Albert Mamo
1 month ago

WHEN YOUR IN BED WITH OUR CORRUPT LABOUR GOVERNMENT.THE SKIES THE LIMIT.👎👎👎

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