Merkantil, the leasing branch of Hungarian bank OTP, is planning to extend its operations in Romania and Croatia before the end of the year, according to Hungarian media reports. According to Budapest-based publication Vilaggazdasag, Merkantil plans to reach the top ten leasing companies in the two countries.

According to the executive head of the Hungarian company Marev Nikolay, Merkantil eyes a portfolio of contracts worth 25-30 million euro before the end of 2006.

OTP Bank holds the majority stock in Robank Romania and is interested in buying one of the oldest financial institutions in Romania, the Savings House (CEC).