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Saham, Sanlam insurance deal faces political risk

South Africa and Morocco

A Moroccan official has criticized the sale of Saham Finances S.A.'s insurance business to South Africa-based Sanlam Ltd. due to the South African government's support to a separatist group, North Africa Post reported citing sources. Othmane Benjeloun, head of Morocco-based Banque Marocaine du Commerce Exterieur, said that the $1.1 billion deal is detrimental to Morocco's interests as the South African government officially recognized the Front Polisario in Western Sahara in 2004.

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