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RBS says Santander has pulled out of €2 billion branch deal

Disappointing news breaking tonight for the bailed out British bank.

STATE-RESCUED ROYAL Bank of Scotland confirmed today that Spanish lender Santander has withdrawn from a £1.65 billion (€2.05 billion) deal to buy more than 300 of its British branches.

“It is of course disappointing that Santander decided to pull out of this transaction,” said RBS chief executive Stephen Hester in a statement.

The collapse will be seen as a huge blow to the bank’s attempts to remove itself from government ownership. The agreement had originally been reached in August 2010.

No reason for the termination of the agreement has been given.

RBS has said it will now commence “a new process of disposal” and provide a further update “in due course”.

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