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Colombia’s top bank joins charge to open in region

Friday, August 6, 2010

Colombia's largest bank Bancolombia is planning to open a local bank in Panama, to take advantage of the rising demand for credit to finance infrastructure projects there.

The Colombian bank is currently operating an offshore bank in Panama which offers services for foreigners, and it asked the Panamanian authorities for a license to operate a local bank.

Colombian banks are setting eyes on Central America for growth. Last month, Grupo Aval, the Colombian largest financial group, bought the Central American bank BAC-Credomatic for $1.9 billion; and Banco Davivienda, Colombia's third-largest bank, said it is looking for acquisition targets in Central America.

Original source: Dow Jones