Russia's largest lender Sberbank withdraws from EU market amid sanctions

Group's subsidiary banks faces abnormal cash outflows, threats to safety of its employees and branches, says statement.

Russia's largest lender Sberbank withdraws from EU market amid sanctions

Russia's largest lender said Wednesday it is withdrawing from the European market as its subsidiaries there are facing large cash outflows amid Western sanctions.

"In the current situation, Sberbank has decided to leave the European market," it said in a statement. "The group's subsidiary banks have faced abnormal cash outflows and threats to the safety of its employees and branches."

A few days ago the European Central Bank warned that Sberbank Europe AG and two subsidiaries of the bank in Croatia and Slovenia are failing or likely to fail owing to a deterioration of their liquidity situation.

The EU, US, UK, Canada, and the EU Commission agreed Sunday to remove several Russian banks from the SWIFT banking system as Russia continued bombing Ukraine.

Meanwhile, in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Serbia, and Slovenia, SberBank branches changed hands to protect customers.

EU and US sanctions against Russia have worried customers in those countries.

Croatian branches of Sberbank were sold to the Croatian Postal Bank and branches in Bosnia and Herzegovina were sold to ASA Bank.

In Slovenia, branches were sold to the New Ljubljana Bank, and Serbian branches were sold to the Agri-Industry Commercial Bank.

Hüseyin Demir

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