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Belgian bank buys into Turkish market

31st May 2006
By Nick Kingsley

Dexia, the Franco-Belgian banking group, is to follow in the footsteps of GE Finance and BNP Paribas among others by buying into Turkey. Dexia will pay $2.4 billion for a 75% share of Denizbank.

The Paris and Brussels-based bank is keen to gain a foothold in what is seen as one of Europe's key growth markets. Turkey's economy is expanding at more than 5% per annum at present and the country is for the first time facing a realistic possibility of EU accession, although this is unlikely to be realized for a number of years.

"Turkey is a country we have been considering for expansion for several years," said Axel Miller, Dexia's chief executive. Further details of the acquisition were not disclosed.

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