SEOUL Jan 5 South Korea's state-run KDB
Financial Group aims to float its shares in the domestic market
by the end of this year as part of the government's
privatisation plans, its chairman said on Thursday, without
giving further details.
"We will prepare for the IPO to be completed within this
year," Kang Man-soo told a news conference.
Privatising the holding company and parent of policy bank
Korea Development Bank (KDB) is a major initiative of South
Korean President Lee Myung-bak, who took office in 2008.
But the plan has made little progress after KDB's attempt to
acquire rival Woori Finance Holdings Co Ltd prior to
a privatisation was rejected by politicians and regulators
earlier this year.
Kang, an ex-finance minister and presidential ally, said the
government could adjust the number of shares to be listed
depending on the market situation.
He also said talks to buy HSBC Holdings Plc's
retail banking operations in South Korea were
"progressing well" and expected to "reach a conclusion soon."
Local media have reported that HSBC plans to sell 11 retail
branches across South Korea as it shifts focus to corporate and