Rumours have been rife in recent weeks concerning the establishment of a new bank in Monaco that would be closely aligned with the State. In some cases, the new bank has been described as ‘the Prince’s Bank.’

Interviewed by local French-language daily Monaco Matin on the eve of National Day, HSH Prince Albert confirmed that a new bank is being planned.

“It is not a question of a national bank but of a bank in which the State would be a shareholder and which could play the role of Caisse des Dépôts. But the state would not be the only shareholder,” the Prince said.

“This is a project that could support the Principality in its economic development, in the financing of structural projects and in sustainable development. But the process is complex and long.”

If the new bank is indeed set up with non-state shareholders or shareholder, it will fall short of being a Sovereign Wealth Fund in the normal understanding.

France established its Caisse des dépôts et consignations in 1816. It can be best described as the investment arm of the French state.

Meanwhile, in Monaco the project is being piloted by Jean Castellini, the Minster of Finance.

FILE PHOTO: Minister of Finance Jean Castellini