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EXCLUSIVE-Spain to make it easier for firms to transfer legal base amid Catalan crisis

Catalan crisis@

MADRID, Oct 5 (Reuters) - The Spanish government will approve a decree on Friday making it easier for companies to transfer their legal base out of Catalonia, two sources said, a move that could deal a serious blow to the region's finances as it considers declaring independence.

The new decree is tailor-made for Spanish lender Caixabank , sources familiar with the matter said, as it would make it possible for the bank to change its legal and tax base without having to hold a shareholders' meeting as stated in its statutes.

"The government is working on changing the law so that it's no longer needed to have a shareholders' meeting, which would delay a change of the legal base in a case of emergency," one of the sources said.

The government and Caixabank declined to comment. (Reporting by Carlos Ruano, writing by Julien Toyer; Editing by Adrian Croft)