The Mexican government on Wednesday, January 12, signaled it would be alert to possible antitrust implications of Citigroup’s sale of its consumer banking operations in Mexico and stated it expected plenty of bidders to emerge for the assets, reported Reuters.
In a statement, the finance ministry stated the departure from Mexico of the country’s no. 3 consumer bank “raises delicate matters for the finance and regulatory authorities, which will receive rigorous and strict attention from the finance ministry, including a fundamental issue regarding concentration.”
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Finance Minister Rogelio Ramirez de la O said the government had “no bias” about who could acquire the Citibanamex assets and that domestic and foreign bidders were welcome to compete.
“In due course, as the process matures, the Mexican government will be observing and looking at the different offers,” Ramirez told Reuters in an interview.
His ministry said Citigroup Chief Executive Officer Jane Fraser came personally to Mexico “to explain the decision, and stressed the bank will maintain its wholesale corporate banking activities in our country, which will involve new investments.”
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