May 7 (Bloomberg) Absa Group Ltd., the South African bank controlled by Barclays Plc, plans to hold an initial public offering for its 55.5 percent-owned National Bank of Commerce Ltd. in Tanzania and list it on the Dar es Salaam exchange. The IPO would dilute the Tanzanian governments stake and is subject to regulatory approvals, Absa Chief Executive Officer Maria Ramos said in an interview in Dar es Salaam last night. The listing, which should take place this year, will leave Absa with a 55 percent stake in the lender, she said. Absa, which plans to expand in Africa along with parent company Barclays, is seeking to boost its earnings after South Africas first recession in 17 years hurt consumer spending. The Johannesburg-based lender has operations in Mozambique and Tanzania and may make an acquisition in Namibia, while Barclays operates in countries like Ghana, Uganda, Kenya and Zimbabwe. Neither of them have operations in Nigeria. We are very keen on Nigeria, Ramos said. The lender, which didnt register with the Central Bank of Nigeria to examine buying a stake in one of the countrys 10 rescued banks, sees the West African country as the obvious place to go, and Ramos said it remains on the radar screen. Absa said on Feb. 16 that full-year profit in 2009 fell 36 percent after bad debts surged and it lost money on equity investments. In the first half of 2010, the companys asset growth has been pretty muted, Ramos said, adding that bad retail loans may have peaked, while corporate bad debts may only start to decline after mid-year.