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  • Writer's pictureBy The Financial District

Italian Banks Must Quit Russia, ECB’s Panetta Says

Italian banks must halt their business in Russia as staying in the country also brings a "reputational problem," European Central Bank policymaker Fabio Panetta said, Giuseppe Fonte and Valentina Za reported for Reuters.


Panetta made the statement during the press conference after the end of the G7 finance meeting in Stresa, northern Italy. I Photo: G7 Facebook



After Austria's Raiffeisen Bank International, UniCredit is the European bank with the largest exposure to Russia, while Intesa Sanpaolo is working to dispose of its business in the country.


"From there (Russia) you have to get out," Panetta told reporters during the press conference after the end of the G7 finance meeting in Stresa, northern Italy.



"There are objective difficulties because getting out of Russia is complicated, you have to find a buyer knowing that you are being forced. It can be expensive; however, you have to get out because there is a reputational problem," added Panetta, the Bank of Italy governor.



UniCredit's Russian arm was this month hit by the seizure of assets worth 463 million euros ($502.12 million) in relation to an aborted gas project for which the banking group had provided guarantees.




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