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Jobs risk on Santander-RBS collapse

Tuesday October 16th 2012

Thousands of jobs are under threat after a deal for Santander to buy hundreds of Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) branches collapsed, according to reports.

The British state-owned bank planned to sell 316 branches and other assets, including 40 banking centres for small and medium-sized enterprises, to the Spanish banking giant in a £1.65 billion deal.

But the European Commission-approved agreement broke down, with the UNITE union calling on the Government to ditch an "insistence" for the sale of RBS' assets.

Gail Cartmail, assistant general secretary of UNITE, said the eleventh-hour collapse "represents another day of chaos for loyal RBS staff" and urged the Government to press the European Commission to find an amicable solution.

"The real danger is that the European Commission's requirement to sell branches and assets by the end of 2013 will result in a fire sale and an attempt by any buyer to strip out costs and drive down terms and conditions of hard working staff," added Cartmail.

"At the very least the commission should give RBS more time to ensure that a buyer is found which is good for the taxpayer and the economy, right for competition and above all right for staff, their terms and conditions, job security and future."

Copyright Press Association 2012

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