The sale of 318 Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) branches to Grupo Santander of Spain has been hit by more delays, The Times reports.
The latest set of problems mean the £165bn deal - which was first announced in August 2010 and had been projected to complete by the end of last year - mean it will not be concluded before June 2013, the report said.
It added RBS was struggling to prepare the business into an acceptable form to Santander and the Financial Services Authority, which is anxious no customers are disrupted.
The Times reported one person familiar with the negotiations said it was proving complex to "unpick an organisation hardwired into the larger RBS-NatWest group".
The official completion date of December 2012 is no longer considered realistic, the report said.
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