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CaixaBank's CEO says bank will not move back to Catalonia

Spain's CaixaBank SA has no intention of moving back to Catalonia after transferring its headquarters out of the region in October 2017, its CEO told a parliamentary commission into the financial crisis on Sept. 5.

Gonzalo Gortázar was quoted by Europa Press as saying that the move was the only solution to put an end to a loss of investor confidence given the political instability in the region.

"Seeing that confidence was starting to crack, which then led to a withdrawal of deposits, a transfer was the only possible solution," he said, adding that he would do the same again if the situation repeated itself.

The bank decided to move its headquarters to Valencia from Barcelona amid political instability following an independence referendum in Catalonia on Oct. 1, 2017, which had been declared illegal by the country's constitutional court. Fellow Catalan lender Banco de Sabadell SA transferred its headquarters to Alicante.

Gortázar said the move was "complicated" due to CaixaBank's attachment to the region where it had been founded 110 years ago. He said it was purely a business decision and had nothing to do with politics.