Venezuela bank nationalisation to stimulate economy

15th May 2009, Comments 0 comments

Finance Minister Ali Rodriguez said the nationalisation of the Bank of Venezuela will stimulate the Venezuelan economy.

Caracas – The nationalisation of the Bank of Venezuela, a local branch of Spain's Grupo Santander, expected later this month, will stimulate the Venezuelan economy, Finance Minister Ali Rodriguez said.

The nationalisation aims to "strengthen the public financial system" and "design a financial strategy to channel public resources to boost production and stimulate the economy," Rodriguez told official Venezuelan television Thursday.

The minister stressed that good management by Santander led the bank to "become a leader in Venezuelan banking with excellent yields."

The Venezuelan financial system has demonstrated "significant strength" in the face of the financial crisis that has crippled banks worldwide, he added.

On Wednesday, President Hugo Chavez hinted that his government may sign an agreement to acquire the Bank of Venezuela on 22 May.

Venezuela reached a deal in April with the Spanish banking giant to buy the Bank of Venezuela, nine months after Santander said it wanted to divest itself of its Venezuelan assets.

Santander purchased Bank of Venezuela in 1996 at a public auction for USD 351.5 million (EUR 258.8 million).

The Venezuelan entity currently has estimated assets of VEF 1.92 billion (USD 657 million).

AFP / Expatica

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