BNP approached Dutch Finance Ministry on possible ABN purchase -source

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Logo of BNP Paribas on a building in Issy-les-Moulineaux, near Paris

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) - French lender BNP Paribas signalled to the Dutch government interest in taking over state-owned bank ABN Amro, a deal that the ministry is not pursuing for the time being, a person with knowledge of with the matter said on Friday.

A report on the approach by Bloomberg News sent ABN Amro shares soaring, gaining 16% in Amsterdam.

Spokespersons for BNP and ABN declined to comment while the Dutch finance ministry said in a statement that it is currently seeking advice on the further sale of shares in ABN.

(Reporting by Toby Sterling; editing by Jason Neely)