Spain’s PM Sanchez sees positive aspects in Bankia-Caixabank merger

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Spain’s Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez on Monday said there were positive aspects in the proposed merger of Spanish lenders Caixabank and state-owned Bankia and called on the sector to take steps to consolidate further.

“From the perspective of size, the Spanish financial sector has to take steps forward,” Sanchez said in an interview on TVE.

On Monday, Sanchez said that for him a publicly controlled bank would be the state agency Instituto de Credito Oficial (ICO), through which the state has been backing the sector with more than 140 billion euros ($165.8 billion) in guaranteed funding lines.

He also said that the deal was made public when Bankia and Caixabank decided to initiate negotiations.

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