Brussels approves state aid to ING

The European Commission has given its approval to the government’s aid package to financial services group ING.

Last month, ING announced plans to sell off its insurance arm, following pressure from Brussels.
Competition commissioner Neelie Kroes said the measures were sufficient to counteract the effect of the state support on the market. ING has had a bail-out of €10bn and a €22bn guarantee on its risky US mortgage portfolio.
‘The scale of the divestments of ING’s insurance activities and of ING Direct US, plus the carve-out of a subsidiary active on the Dutch retail banking market, are indeed significant,’ Kroes said in a statement. ‘These divestments are part of a wider ‘back to basics’ plan by ING that has strong merits.’

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