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Raiffeisen Bank Kosovo’s Equity Increase finalised

Raiffeisen Zentralbankжsterreich AG (RZB-Austria) has increased the capital of its network bank, Raiffeisen Bank Kosovo J.S.C., Pristina, by 5 million confirming once more its commitment to the region. Raiffeisen Bank''s core capital now amounts to approximately 17,750 million, eligible own funds to 13,376 million.

"The capital increase provides RaiffeisenBank with a solid basis for continuing its successful way in thenext years and is a strong proof of trust from the bank''s ownerthat the chosen path is the right one. By offering a wide range ofhigh quality tailor-made products and services the bank willcontinue its steady growth also in 2004. Our aim is to become thelargest bank in the market soon", says Herbert Stepic,Chairman of the Managing Board of Raiffeisen InternationalBank-Holding AG (Raiffeisen International) and Deputy Chairman ofRZB."In the long run, the capital increase will alsostrengthen the competitiveness of the Kosovar banking sector andcontribute to the development of the local economy", Stepicadds.

Raiffeisen Bank is a universal bank focusing onboth, retail and corporate banking. Having started its businessactivities only in November 2001, it is Kosovo''s onlycommercial bank with a focus on developing business in thecorporate sector. In 2003, the bank has been particularlysuccessful in the SME sector achieving a of 26 per cent marketshare making it No. 1 in this business segment. It alsostrengthened its position in the retail sector: As the first bankin Kosovo it offers all Visa (debit, credit, Electron, Plus) cardholders 24 hour access to their accounts through its ATM networkwhich currently constitutes of 13 ATM''s installed all aroundthe Kosovo. As of 31 December 2003, the bank had a balance sheettotal of 95.4 million. This was 70 per cent more than at year-end2002 making it Kosovo''s second largest bank only two yearsafter starting banking operations. At reporting date, it servicedmore than 85,800 clients, an increase of 56 per cent compared withyear-end 2002. Currently, the bank has a total staff of 263 andruns 16 branches throughout the Kosovo.

Raiffeisen Bank Kosovo, Pristina, is a subsidiaryof Raiffeisen International. Raiffeisen International, 100 per centowned by RZB, is the holding company for RZB''s most importantsubsidiaries in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE). RZB is thecentral institution of the Austrian Raiffeisen Banking Group, thecountry''s most powerful banking group. RZB also considers CEEas its home market and via Raiffeisen International operates anetwork of 15 subsidiary banks with more than 800 banking outlets,as well as two representative offices, in 16 markets of theregion. In September 2003, Financial Times magazine TheBanker has awarded the prestigious prize"Bank of the Year2003" to RZB in Austria and its network banks in Albania,Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia and Montenegro andSlovakia. In March 2004, Global Finance announced that RZB and itsNetwork Banks were selected as winners of the"Best Bank inEastern Europe and Central Asia"-award. Banka e Kursimeve(Albania), Priorbank (Belarus), Raiffeisen Bank d.d. (Bosnia andHerzegovina), Raiffeisen Bank S.A. (Romania), Raiffeisenbank a.d.(Serbia and Montenegro) and Tatra banka a.s. (Slovakia) won the"Best Bank" awards for their respectivecountries.


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