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Four state-owned commercial banks submit reform plan on Jan 2

4-banksFour state-owned commercial banks would place initial business and automation plans to the Banking and Financial Institutions Division today as part of complying conditions under their recapitalisation programme, officials said.

“We will discuss on how the banks will implement their respective automation plan, said a senior official. The plans were supposed to be submitted within January 15.

He said a committee headed by additional secretary of the division would scrutinise the plans.

Additional Secretary Amalendu Mukerjee would chair the meeting at finance ministry to be attended by chairmen and managing directors of the banks – Sonali, Janata, Agrani and Rupali.

The government disbursed a total of Tk4,100 crore last week to make up the capital shortfall of the banks on condition the banks would reform the credit risk-related issues.

Meanwhile, the International Monetary Fund set three new conditions for the state-owned commercial banks under its extended credit facility loans.

The conditions include restoration of capital position, full recovery of default loans from state-owned enterprises and automation of the banking system by March this year.

An IMF staff report released recently said the conditions imposed as the banks’ financial performance deteriorated due to the credit scams of Hall-Mark and Bismillah groups.

The banks would be liable to carry a string of operational measures to improve their financial portfolios as a pre-condition to have the fund disbursed in the way of meeting their shortfalls in capital.

The combined capital shortfall of the banks stood at Tk9,062 crore as of June 30 last year, an increase of about 360% from December 31, 2012, according to statistics of Bangladesh Bank.

The International Monetary Fund has also recommended the finance ministry to inject money into the troubled banks so the banks concerned could face their challenges, said an official. “The banks will have to implement a number of conditions to become eligible for the fund.???

An unusual spike in classified loan accounts for the astonishing rise in the shortfall, prompting calls for restructuring of the banks, said an executive of Bangladesh Bank.

As per the refinancing plan of the finance ministry, Sonali Bank has been provided with Tk1,998 crore, Agrani Bank Tk1,200 crore,  Janata Bank Tk600 crore and Rupali Bank Tk300 crore.

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Report: Asif Showkat Kallol

Source: Dhaka Tribune

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