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Tue 17 Apr 2007 07:01 PM

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UAE offer accepted by Egyptian shareholders

National Bank for Development shareholders are willing to accept an offer of $1.93 a share.

Private shareholders owning 53% of Egypt's National Bank for Development (NBD) are willing to accept an offer of 11 Egyptian pounds ($1.93) a share from a UAE consortium, a bank official said on Tuesday.

NBD General Manager Sharif Farouk told Reuters that the bank had written to the consortium, led by Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank, to ask it to make a formal bid for their stake.

The consortium, which also includes Emirates International Investment Company, bid for 100% of the Egyptian bank last week at 11 pounds.

The bid was much lower than expected, at about one third of the market price before the bids were opened. Trading in the shares stopped last Thursday at 16.25 pounds.

The deputy governor of the Central Bank of Egypt, Tarek Amer, told Reuters on Tuesday that the government had not yet decided whether to accept 11 pounds a share for its own stake in NBD, which accounts for about 17.86% of the bank.

"But it is not crucial to the deal, because the private shareholders who accept are a majority," he added.

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