ING announced last week its plans to separate its banking and insurance operations as part of its ongoing review of the Group’s strategy and as a step in its Back to Basics programme, which was designed earlier this year to streamline the company and reduce risk, costs and leverage. This will be achieved over the next four years by a divestment of all insurance operations (including Investment Management). ING will explore all options, including initial public offerings, sales or combinations thereof.

Over the last six months, ING worked internally, and with the Dutch government and the European Commission (EC), to devise a plan that will enable it to pay back the Dutch state, address the EC’s requirements for viability and fair competition, and return its focus to the business and its customers.

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