Wellington, Aug 14 NZPA - ANZ Banking Group Ltd said it is committed to its New Zealand business even though it produces lower returns than the Australian business.
Mike Smith, the chief executive of the Australian parent of ANZ National Bank, commented on "bank sledging" while in Auckland yesterday.
ANZ National employs almost 8500 people, has $140 billion of assets and accounts for around 1 percent of New Zealand's gross domestic product, he said in a speech to the trans-Tasman Business Circle.
"My view is that a resurgence of bank sledging, and the associated attacks on Australian ownership of New Zealand banks might speak to our `inner populist', but they simply don't help," he said.
He reiterated warnings he has given in Australia against excessive regulation to counter the fallout from the financial crisis.
The major banks in New Zealand were less profitable than before the crisis but they were strong and continued to support the New Zealand economy.
"And our commitment to New Zealand is unwavering - even though New Zealand produces lower returns than Australia, the recession is more pronounced in New Zealand and despite RBNZ rules are tougher than they are in Australia."
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