ISTANBUL (Reuters) – The proposed transfer of a 28% stake in Turkey’s largest listed lender Isbank from the main opposition party to the Treasury was discussed at a meeting of President Tayyip Erdogan’s AK Party this week, the Hurriyet website reported on Thursday.
AKP deputy chairman Nurettin Canikli presented a proposal to a party meeting on the transfer of the Republican People’s Party (CHP) stake to the Treasury and Erdogan called for it to be revised and presented to him as soon as possible, Hurriyet said.
Shares in Isbank <ISCTR.IS> fell 2.79% in early trade to 6.98 lira in Istanbul after the news emerged. The main share index <.XU100> was down 0.24%.
Canikli was expected to prepare two alternative proposals on the issue and present them to an AKP central executive committee meeting on Feb. 17, Hurriyet said.
In February last year, Erdogan said the Treasury would take over the CHP’s Isbank stake, which was bequeathed to the party by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, founder of the Turkish Republic.
The CHP, which appoints four members to Isbank’s board, opposes the move by Erdogan, who said that Ataturk had bequeathed the stake to the Treasury, not the party.
The free float of Isbank shares stands at around 33%, while the Isbank pension fund holds a 39% stake. The CHP holds a 28.09%.
(Reporting by Daren Butler; Editing by Ece Toksabay)