November 8, 2008 / 9:08 PM / 9 years ago

Latvia takes over 2nd largest bank as crisis hits

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RIGA, Nov 8 (Reuters) - The Latvian government said on Saturday it was taking over the country's second largest bank as the global financial crisis hit the small Baltic state, where economic growth has also sharply fallen.

It said in a statement it acted to "ensure a stable financial system in Latvia and the work of Parex bank". Parex is the largest locally-owned bank in a sector where Nordic banks have made inroads in recent years.

Prime Minister Ivars Godmanis told reporters after a cabinet meeting the decision to take over Parex was in line with moves by other European Union countries to support their banks.

Godmanis also said he saw no need to ask the International Monetary Fund or the EU for help. (Reporting by Patrick Lannin; editing by Andrew Dobbie)

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