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MoroccoGÇÖs BMCE Bank to raise $199 mln in share issue

RABAT, June 26 (Reuters) - BMCE Bank, one of Morocco's largest lenders, said it has secured approval from the market regulator to raise 1.9 billion dirhams ($199 million) by issuing new shares and a rights issue on the Casablanca stock exchange.

Approval of the capital increase comes a week after British development finance agency CDC Group acquired a near 5% stake in BMCE Bank after a $200 million capital injection.

In a first stage, BMC will raise 897 million dirhams by issuing 4.9 million new shares and will then in a second stage launch a 1 billion dirham rights issue totalling 5.5 million shares, it said in a prospectus published on the bourse's website on Wednesday.

The shares in the new issue and the rights issue will be priced at 180 dirhams each, the level at which BMCE shares were trading at on Wednesday.

The subscription period will be from July 9-31.

African branches accounted for 46% of the bank's profits in 2018, while Morocco and Europe represented 48% and 6%, respectively. (Reporting by Ahmed Eljechtimi Editing by Ulf Laessing and Susan Fenton)