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Citigroup setting up a representative office in Iraq

Citigroup received approval this week to open a representative office in Baghdad and will consider more such offices in the country. Even though in other emerging markets they are withdrawing, in possibly as many as 21 countries. Iraq is the Citi's first country opening for six years.

Banks in Iraq
Today, 15 international banks operate there, competing with seven state banks, 23 private lenders, and nine banks operating under Islamic rules.

Standard Chartered is planning to open branches this year in Baghdad and the city of Erbil, followed by a third office next year in the oil hub of Basra. In contrast, HSBC Holdings, said June 25 that it may sell its 70 percent stake in Iraq's Dar Es Salaam Investment Bank following a strategic review.

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