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New NLB Strategy to be Unveiled in May

Ljubljana, 07 April (STA) - The supervisory board of the state-controlled NLB bank stopped short on Wednesday of adopting the long-awaited strategy for the financial group until 2015. A press release from the chief supervisor spoke of $broad consensus$, announcing a final decision for May.

The supervisory board reached broad consensus both on the key markets and products, chief supervisor Marko Simoneti wrote in the release. The final wording will be endorsed at next session in May, when the strategy will also be unveiled publicly.

The new strategy defines strategic markets geographically and market-wise. Apart from Slovenia, the key markets for the NLB group are those in the SE Europe such as Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro, Kosovo, Macedonia and Serbia. Allocation of capital in the markets will run accordingly.

Simoneti said retail banking and transactions with companies will continue to be the cornerstones of the group's services. Complementing the offerings will be a series of supplementary services ranging from investment to private banking, asset management, life and pension insurance, real estate leasing and trade financing.

Business daily Finance reported recently that the NLB group was planning to withdraw from central European markets, i.e. Frankfurt, Prague, Zurich and Sofia. The supervisory were briefed on the operations of the LHB Frankfurt subsidiary today, endorsing planned steps in the restructuring programme.

The supervisors also endorsed the annual report for last year and a report by the supervisory board and evaluation of their work in the past year. They established cooperation from all members was active and conscientious.

The supervisory board, which was appointed in July 2009, while the chair took over in November, established a new system of work in which matters are first pored over be specialised commissions before the board takes the final decision.

Simoneti believes such a system to be efficient, while he sees further potential in even better coordination between the work of the supervisory board's specialised commissions and further training of supervisors related to their responsibilities in the bank's bodies.

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