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MPS Chairman says aims to keep bank independent

SIENA, Italy, Oct 9 (Reuters) - The chairman of Italy's third biggest lender, Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena , said on Tuesday he aimed to keep the bank "totally and absolutely" independent.

Alessandro Profumo, former CEO of UniCredit , told a shareholder meeting he did not know which new investors would buy into a capital increase of up to 1 billion euros, which MPS plans to launch by 2015.

He said however that the ideal investor for the bank would not come from the financial industry, "because we do not want to sell the bank."

"Our objective is to maintain the autonomy of MPS, and keep hte bank based in Siena," Profumo said.

(Reporting By Silvia Aloisi)

((silvia.aloisi@thomsonreuters.com)(+39 02 6612 9723))

Keywords: MONTEPASCHI INDEPENDENCE