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RZB-Austria chooses UBS AG as its CLS third-party provider

Media Global

Raiffeisen Zentralbank Österreich AG (RZB) is the 50th CLS third-party client of UBS. With this partnership, RZB and its subsidiaries will be able to execute and settle their cross-border foreign exchange transactions through the CLS global settlement system. In the current environment of rising fix costs and shrinking margins, CLS delivers a much-needed reduction in the marginal cost of doing business.

Vienna based RZB is the central institution of the Austrian Raiffeisen Banking Group, one of the country's leading banking groups. As a universal banking group it offers a comprehensive range of financial services. RZB itself is one of Austria's leading commercial and investment banks and a leading bank in Central and Eastern Europe. It also considers Central and Eastern Europe as its home market, where RZB operates a network of 15 subsidiary banks with more than 800 banking outlets in 16 markets of the region. RZB also has a strong presence throughout Asia and in the world's financial centers. It is one of the most active European FX traders, with a 24 hours activity in this business field.

RZB's Global Treasurer, Mr. Armin Steppan, commented, The quality of UBS's services and strengths in technology has given us the confidence to further increase our partnership. CLS marks the future of FX settlement and with UBS we made the right decision."

Martin Wiedmann, Global Head Foreign Exchange Distribution at UBS Investment Bank, Zurich said, This partnership underlines our capacity to implement sophisticated clients like RZB. As a leading bank in Austria and in Central and Eastern Europe, RZB is our perfect partner to develop an integrated "front to back" cash model."

CLS third-party services are a part of "UBS. The Bank for Banks.", a programme which offers banks and financial Institutions a wide range of modular services enabling them to concentrate on their core competencies and deploy their resources more effectively. At the same time, UBS can make optimum use of its own capacities and expertise to meet the needs of its clients.

For more information see: Zurich/Basle, 14 January 2004