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The relationship banks will have with nonfinanciers trying to enter the industry should be clarified before authorities decide to grant them banking licenses, Katsuyuki Sugita, chairman of the Japanese Bankers Association, said Tuesday.

Sugita, speaking at his regular news conference, was answering a question about how the banking industry views recent attempts by nonfinanciers — such as electronics giant Sony Corp. and supermarket chain operator Ito-Yokado Co. — to acquire banking licenses. Financial authorities are examining requests from both firms and considering guidelines and criteria for their possible entry into the bank ing industry, which has long been shielded by regulations.

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