JPMorgan Chase ATMs stand near a door as customers walk past a Duane Reade store in New York, U.S., October 3, 2016. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson
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Saudi Arabia is exploring the possibility of granting more licenses to foreign banks and easing restrictions on their operations to boost growth in the private sector, people with knowledge of the matter said.Loosening restrictions on foreign lenders would increase competition among the 25 banks licensed to operate in Saudi Arabia, the Middle East's largest economy and second-most populous nation. The 13 international lenders licensed by SAMA, including JPMorgan Chase & Co., BNP Paribas and Deutsche Bank AG., currently face limitations on what products they can offer and how many branches they can open.Some foreign banks still have holdings in Saudi lenders, including HSBC Holdings PLC's 40 percent stake in Saudi British Bank, and Credit Agricole SA's 31 percent holding in Banque Saudi Fransi.
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