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31.01.06

RZB Group steps into Moldova

Chisinau/Bucharest/Vienna, 31 January 2006

RZB Group steps into Moldova

Romanian Raiffeisen Bank opens Representative Office in Chisinau.Triggers are positive trend in Moldova and strong presence inneighbouring Ukraine and Romania. 18th Central and Eastern Europeanmarket embraced by Raiffeisen International.



The RZB Groups Romanian Network Bank Raiffeisen Bank S.A. opens a Representative Office in Chisinau, capital of the Republic of Moldova, today. The new Representative Office complements the strong presence of the RZB Group in Central and Eastern Europe, a region it considers its home market and where it runs a strong network of 16 banks and numerous leasing firms bundled in its subsidiary Raiffeisen International Bank-Holding AG. Moldova is the 18th market covered by Raiffeisen International in Central and Eastern Europe, 16 of which by the more than 2,400 branches of its operative units, two by Representative Offices of its Network Banks. Raiffeisen is particularly strong in Moldovas neighbouring countries Ukraine and Romania, where it runs the largest and the third largest bank, respectively.

Considering the positive trend in Moldova and the strong interest in Moldova shown by many of our customers, especially in Romania and Ukraine, we believe it is the right time to step into the country with a representative office, said Herbert Stepic, Deputy-Chairman of Raiffeisen Zentralbank ?sterreich AGs (RZB) Managing Board and CEO of Raiffeisen International. The Representative Office serves as a local entry point for and provides information to Raiffeisens customers. It also represents Raiffeisens interests and observes the development of the local banking market.

TheMoldavian economy shows strong signs of recovery and accelerated growth.It grew by 8.4 pe cent in the first three quarters of 2005, by 7.3 percent in 2004 and by 6.6 per cent in 2003. Annual inflation dropped from15. 7 per cent in 2003 to 12.5 per cent in 2004 and is expected around10 per cent for 2005. Most of its imports come from Romania (14.2 percent) and Ukraine (13.2 per cent), while the major shares of exports goto Russia (88.5 per cent) and Romania (8.2 per cent).



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Raiffeisen Bank S.A., Bucharest, is a universal bank providing acomplete range of high quality products and services to individuals,SMEs and large corporations. The bank serves approximately two millionretail customers, more than 120,000 of which are SMEs, and more than3,800 large and medium corporations. Raiffeisen Bank has a network of213 outlets in Romania and employs more than 4,500 people.

Raiffeisen International Bank-Holding AG, Vienna, owns 99.4 per cent ofRaiffeisen Bank S.A. Raiffeisen International is the steering unit forthe subsidiaries of Raiffeisen Zentralbank Osterreich AG (RZB) inCentral and Eastern Europe. It operates one of the leading bankingnetworks in CEE with 16 subsidiary banks and many leasing companies. 9.2million customers are served via 2,400 business outlets. RaiffeisenInternational is a fully consolidated subsidiary of RZB, which owns 70per cent of the common stock. The remaining 30 per cent is free float,the shares are traded on the Vienna Stock Exchange. RZB is a leadingcorporate and investment bank in Austria and the central institution ofthe Austrian Raiffeisen Banking Group, the country''s most powerfulbanking group.

Contact details of the Representative Office:

Raiffeisen BankRepresentative Office Chisinau

Victor Bodiu, Representative

Tel.+373 22 27 93 31, Fax +373 22 27 93 43

65, Stefan cel Mare blvd.,Chisinau, Moldova, MD-2001

For further information please contact

Andreas Ecker-Nakamura(andreas.ecker@rzb.at. +43-1/717 07-1753) or

Michael Palzer(michael.palzer@ri.co.at, +43-1/717 07-1504).

http://www.rzb.at,http://www.ri.co.at, http://www.raiffeisen.ro

 

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E-mail: pr@raiffeisen.ru

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E-mail: marketing@raiffeisen.ru

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