ING to strengthen activities in Turkey

Today’s Zaman - Dutch ING announced plans to sell operations worth up to EUR 8 billion to reduce risk, focus its bank on European operations and manage its banking and insurance separately, boosting its shares on Thursday. Specifically, ING said it will wind down its retail bank operations in Ukraine, review life insurance activities in China and Japan and strengthen activities in Poland, Romania and Turkey. In a press release issued yesterday, ING specifically said the bank will be focusing on retail banking. "Retail banking in Central Europe will aim to further strengthen activities in Poland, Romania and Turkey," the statement read. Nanne Bos, ING media relations representative and spokesperson for retail banking, described the move as a "strategic update”, adding that the bank will continue to focus on its core business in Europe, of which ING considers Turkey a part. "We see long-term potential in Turkey," he said, describing the country as part of the "building block of our European strategy to build a European bank. We continue to be very happy with our investment in Turkey."