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Japan's Mitsubishi UFJ does not plan to boost VietinBank stake

Japan's Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. clarified it does not plan to boost its shareholding in Vietnam Joint Stock Commercial Bank for Industry & Trade, or Vietinbank, to 50% from 19.7%, Reuters reported, citing state-run Vietnam Television.

The state-run television broadcaster rectified its previous report, which quoted Mitsubishi UFJ Financial executive Eiichi Yoshikawa as saying that the Japanese group was looking to raise its stake in the Vietnamese lender to 50%. In a statement, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial clarified Yoshikawa had "reiterated the bank's commitment to Vietnam with its current stake," Reuters reported.

Yoshikawa serves as group head of global commercial banking business group, according to the group's website.

Yoshikawa met with Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc and other government officials, including State Bank of Vietnam Governor Le Minh Hung. Vietnam's central bank currently holds a 64.5% stake in Vietinbank. Hung said the government is open to foreign investment in Vietnamese banks.

Vietnam's existing regulations cap foreign ownership in Vietnamese banks at 30%.

Meanwhile, World Bank arm International Finance Corp. is finding a buyer for its 8% stake in Vietinbank, Bloomberg News reported.