May 16, 2019 / 12:46 PM / 6 months ago

Merkel on Commerzbank: German government has no fixed position on mergers

German Chancellor Angela Merkel addresses a working session of the Petersberg Climate Dialogue, an informal meeting of ministers and representatives from 35 countries focused on the implementation of the Paris Climate Agreement in Berlin, Germany, May 14, 2019. REUTERS/Fabrizio Bensch

BERLIN (Reuters) - Chancellor Angela Merkel, when asked about Commerzbank, said on Thursday that the German government has no fixed position on mergers.

Asked if she was in favour of Dutch bank ING taking a stake in Commerzbank, she said: “Regarding the banking landscape, those are private sector decisions.”

“There is no precedent from the German government for anything that develops in this area,” Merkel told a news conference with Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, adding that there were no bans on international cooperation.

The organisation that defends shareholder interests in the Netherlands on Wednesday called on ING Groep to clarify whether it is interested in acquiring German rival Commerzbank.

Reporting by Michelle Martin; Editing by Paul Carrel

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