Montreal-based National Bank of Canada (NBC) has raised its stake in Mauritius-based AfrAsia Bank to 17.5%, which makes it the second-largest investor in the bank.

National Bank bought an additional 8% shareholding in the AfrAsia Bank through a rights issue launched and completed by the Mauritius-based bank.

The rights issue helped the bank raise additional capital of MUR920m ($25.97m), to boost its capital base and support its growth plans.

AfrAsia Bank chairman Maurice Lam remarked: "This new investment evidences the trust of NBC in AfrAsia Bank’s ambitions and international expansion plans as we continue to build bridges between Africa and the world. Over the past eight years, we have been focusing on regional and international growth, while reinforcing our footprint through our representative offices in Johannesburg, Cape Town and London.

"This strategic deal with NBC creates long-term value for our shareholders and underpins the financial strength of the bank while we continue to pursue attractive growth opportunities."