VIENNA, Feb 12 (Reuters) - A senior Raiffeisen executive did not rule out discussing a merger between Raiffeisen Bank International (RBI) and Raiffeisen Zentralbank (RZB) , according to an interview published in an Austrian newspaper on Thursday.
RBI posted a preliminary 2014 loss of 493 million euros ($559 million) this week and embarked on a restructuring plan to exit Poland and cut back in Russia.
RZB is the majority shareholder of RBI. Raiffeisen Landesbank Oberoesterreich AG (RLB OOe) is a major shareholder of RZB.
RLB OOe chief executive Heinrich Schaller told Austrian newspaper Oberoesterreichische Nachrichten that the RBI loss "hurts" but that it's not "existentially threatening".
When asked whether there would be a merger between RBI and RZB, Schaller said there was not currently a plan for this.
"If there is (a concept) with good arguments, we will discuss this objectively ... RBI and RZB will be set up so that they are not dangerous for the sector," Schaller was quoted as saying.
RBI was not immediately available for comment.
$1 = 0.8814 euros Reporting by Angelika Gruber; Writing by Shadia Nasralla; Editing by Mark Potter