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Britains's RBS sells shares in Bank of China

Britains's RBS sells shares in Bank of China

Royal Bank of Scotland confirmed yesterday that it is selling its 4.26 percent stake in Bank of China for 1.6 billion pounds (1.77 billion euros, US$2.43 billion).
In a statement issued in London, RBS said it sold off its 10.8 billion shares in the Bank of China on the Hong Kong stock exchange for 1.71 Hong Kong dollars per share.
RBS - the biggest foreign shareholder in Bank of China, whose majority owner is the Chinese government - was among three banks bailed out by the British government in October.
The sale, which bolsters RBS's balance sheet in the midst of the global financial crisis, comes after chief executive Stephen Hester visited Beijing last week to inform Bank of China executives of his intention to sell the stake.
Hong Kong tycoon Li Ka-shing sold part of his charitable foundation's stake in Bank of China last week, raising more than US$500 million U.S. dollars. Swiss bank UBS meanwhile disposed of its 1.33 percent stake for US$835 million dollars.