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Sonali Bank achieves progress in loan recovery, deposit collection

Published : Tuesday, 23 April, 2024 at 12:00 AM  Count : 244

Sonali Bank achieves progress in loan recovery, deposit collection

Sonali Bank achieves progress in loan recovery, deposit collection

Managing Director of Sonali Bank, Md Afzal Karim, the countrys largest state owned commercial bank has said the banks liquidity situation has significantly improved in recent past, recovery of default loans progressed, client services opened new windows and its dependent of government funding of capital shortfall has come to a stop.

 Speaking to The Daily Observer to this correspondent last week, he made these observations saying the bank has overcome many of the critical problems it was plagued in the past years, especially since he took over as the chief executive of the bank in August 2022.

He said Sonali Bank is the major economic power house, financing trading and service sector as well as manufacturing. Recently it has introduced some new customer services like Sonali-e-wallet or payment gates which customers can operate for payment of student tuition fees, utility bills or transfer fund 24 hours a day from any part of the country or the world.

Especially using Mobile APS; customer of Sonali Bank PLC are getting opportunity to withdraw money from any branch of the bank by scanning the QR code as an alternative to checks. He said Sonali Bank has been associated with Bengali QR code of Bangladesh Bank.

Through Sonali mobile APS, or mobile financial services ( MFS) one can send money instantly to beneficiarys bank account at home or in America or anywhere.  Additional incentives are being provided by the bank against the remittances sent by expatriates to aavoid transfer by hundi.

Customers of the bank can buy products using Bengali QR code at various outlets. By scanning the QR code, one can pay for the product. The bank is working to switch to a cashless payment system.

He said when he took charge of the Sonali Bank two years ago all government owned banks had capital shortfall. Sonali Bank had Tk 6,765 crore shortfalls and the government pressure continues to remove the shortfalls to end government funding of the capital shortfalls.

He said since 2023, Sonali Bank has succeeded in removing capital shortfall without taking money from the government. The capital shortfall has decreased by Tk 3,639 crore in one year, which is record progress. Now, the capital shortfall of the banks stands at Tk2,342 crore.

He also said that the Net Interest Income (NII) of the bank increased by Tk617 crores to Tk826 crores in 2023, which was Tk 209 crore in 2022. About operating profit, he said it has increased by Tk1,523 crores to Tk3,905 crores in 2023. It was Tk2,382 crores in 2022.

Classified loan (CL) recovery increased in 2023 by Tk 126 crore to Tk 567 crore. It was Tk441 crores in 2022. The A/D Ratio increased by 7.29 percent to 66.88 percent in 2023.  He said non-performing loans came down to 13.13 percent at the end of 2023 from 14.83 percent at the end of 2022. It was way up at 17.32 percent percent in 2021.

Afzal Karim said loan disbursement increased to Tk Tk 100, 809 crore at the end of 2023 from Tk 69060 crore when he took over. Meanwhile, deposits in Sonali Bank has soared to Tk 150, 732 crore from Tk 142, 036 crore at the end of 2023.

It was Tk 135, 082 crores in 2021. He said Sonali Bank is a major mobiliser of remittance which has singularly contributed to boosting banks deposit.

By calling a service number, customer can get solution to any problem. "We are constantly working to improve the quality of all types of services to customers," he said adding 21 branches of Sonali Bank have been promoted as model branches in 2023.  New branches will be upgraded to model branches status.

Out of a total 1232 branches, 50 pecent Sonali Bank branches are in urban areas and the rest are in rural areas. There were 16 loss-making branches in 2021, which increased to 17 next year. But by the end of 2023, the number of loss-making branches decreed to 8.

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