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Sberbank does not rule out 'geographic expansion' after sanctions are lifted — CEO

September 21, 17:57 UTC+3
In an interview with TASS, Sberbank CEO German Gref has shared his opinion on sanctions, Chinese market and Russian banking sector
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© AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin

MOSCOW, September 21. /TASS/. Sberbank does not rule out major geographic expansion in presence of the credit institutions after sanctions are lifted, Chief Executive Officer of the bank Herman Gref told TASS on Wednesday.

"We revised our international strategy. There is nothing dramatic in it; there is a portion of jurisdictions we want to cut and it is a tiny one. We intended to focus efforts on countries with appropriate economic potential. Any major geographic expansion of our presence is possible only after lifting or significant relaxation of conditions of sanctions. It is not real now," Gref said. 

Sberbank and Chinese market

Sberbank currently does not see opportunities for entering the Chinese banking market.

"So far, we do not see any possibilities for existing in China in general. They have a reserved attitude towards foreign banks. There is no foreign bank that would have a serious business," Gref said.

At the same time, Gref has made it clear that the credit institution intends to develop cross-border cooperation with the banks of the Pacific Rim countries.

Plans on cutting rates 

Sberbank does not plan to cut rates on its product after the key rate downward change by the Bank of Russia, Gref has assured.

"We lowered rates a month ago and their reduction following the Central Bank is not in the agenda. However, the rates downward trend is in place and I think rates will gradually decline at year-end. The rates will definitely drop against activity we see now," the banker said.

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