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South Africa OKs $5 Billion Barclays Bank Deal

South Africa has approved a proposal by Britain's Barclays bank to buy a majority stake in Absa, South Africa's largest retail bank.

Barclays said Monday it has raised its offer to more than 13 dollars a share (from 79 rand to 82.5 rand), and is willing to spend 5.5 billion dollars to buy 60 percent of Absa, the biggest single foreign investment since the end of South Africa's apartheid regime.

Barclays was a major investor during the time South Africa was ruled by a whites-only government, but withdrew from the country in 1986 under pressure from anti-apartheid activists.

Some information for this report provided by AP, AFP, Reuters.