TBILISI, February 27 (RIA Novosti) - Georgia’s President Mikheil Saakashvili said that Russia was allegedly buying out Georgian banks, including one of the country’s largest banks, Liberty Bank.
Speaking at a press briefing on Tuesday night, Saakashvili said that Liberty Bank was purchased by Russia’s largest lender Sberbank, while two more Russian banks, namely Alfa-Bank and Gazprombank, eyed other Georgian banks.
Director General of Liberty Bank Lado Gurgenidze, however, denied later that his bank was purchased by Russia’s Sberbank.
“I want to point out that the information is not true. We had talks with the Russian bank neither in the past, nor at the moment,” Gurgenidze wrote in his Facebook account.
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Any response would likely boomerang on Russia – the partnership between Rosneft and ExxonMobil is a case in point. The United States has hit Russia with a third round of sanctions. This time the Americans went with a higher caliber weapon, targeting Russia’s biggest energy companies (Rosneft and Novatek) and banks (VEB and Gazprombank).