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OTP Calls Inclusion on 'Sponsors of War' List 'Undeserved'

Banking

Image by Adriana Iacob / Shutterstock.com

OTP Bank, Hungary's biggest commercial lender, said its inclusion on a list of "international sponsors of war" by Ukraine's National Agency on Corruption Prevention (NACP) was "completely undeserved" in a statement issued late Friday.

"OTP Bank condemns all aggression against sovereign states, including that against Ukraine, and is committed to supporting Ukrainian citizens and the country's economy," OTP said, according to news agency MTI.

"In addition to maintaining continuous service and lending activities, our bank has assisted Ukraine with humanitarian support in the billions of forints and offered long-term accommodations and provisions for several hundred war refugees," it added.

OTP dismissed a number of "false claims" by the NACP, including ones pointing to the "importance" of OTP for the Russian economy, the lender's "continued activities" in the occupied territories of Donbas and Crimea, its offer of "preferential credit" terms to the Russian military and its "recognition of the existence of the Donetsk and Luhansk 'people's republics'".

OTP said its market share in Russia stands at just 0.17% and noted that foreign-owned banks with "significantly larger" market shares had not been included on the list.

No member of OTP Group is continuing any activity in territories of Ukraine that are under the occupation of the Russian Federation, OTP said. OTP operates "in full compliance with local and international rules" in all of its markets and immediately ceased all activities in the occupied territories there in 2014, it added.

OTP Bank is not providing any new credit to the Russian military "with preferential terms or in any other manner", the lender said.

The bank has "never recognized in any manner" the independence of Donetsk and Luhansk, it added.

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