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Press Release of Banco de Portugal on claims of Oak Finance Luxembourg SA over BES

On 22 December 2014, Banco de Portugal decided that BES's liability comprising the loan granted by Oak Finance Luxembourg on 30 June 2014 had at no point been transferred to Novo Banco.

That liability was not transferred to Novo Banco as there were serious and well-founded reasons to believe that Oak Finance was acting on behalf of Goldman Sachs International in regard to the loan, and that the latter entity held a stake in BES that exceeded 2% of equity.

By law, claims under these conditions cannot be transferred to a bridge bank. In this matter therefore, Banco de Portugal is unable to create exceptions to the legal require-ments.

Goldman Sachs International presented a written appeal to Banco de Portugal against the 22 December 2014 decision.

Banco de Portugal analysed the appeal closely, with the assistance of an independent external consultant.

The information supplied by Goldman Sachs International did not remove the reasons for doubt, factual and legal, which formed the premises of the 22 December decision.

In particular, the appeal from Goldman Sachs International did not demonstrate that there had been an error in July 2014 in Goldman Sachs' official communication to the market, which was not corrected at the time.

Furthermore, it also did not demonstrate that Oak Finance was not acting on behalf of Goldman Sachs International in regard to the loan that Goldman Sachs International organised, structured and financed, by underwriting securities issued by Oak Finance for the purpose.

Thus Banco de Portugal has decided to confirm and maintain its decision of 22 December 2014. Any further doubts may only be clarified in court, as Banco de Portugal may not, when in doubt, allow a transfer that is effectively irreversible and that carries a serious risk of irreparable damage to the public interest.

Lisbon, 17 February 2015