Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal yesterday said he delivered on his promises he made six months ago that the non-performing loans at the state banks would not go up any longer.
“After taking the helm of the finance ministry, I said that non-performing loans of the state-owned banks will not rise. Today, we have found the data, which shows that it has not risen in reality.”
The default loans of the state-owned banks did not increase in the last six months, he said.
He made the comments while talking to the media after a meeting with the chairmen and chief executive officers of the state banks at his secretariat office.
The minister provided the NPL data of the eight banks.
In December 2018, the default loan of Sonali Bank was 30.38 percent of the outstanding loans and it went down to 25.5 percent as of June 2019.
For Janata Bank, it was 37.32 percent in December and it came down to 35 percent in last month.
Rupali Bank’s default loan fell from 19.21 percent to 17 percent during the period, while Agrani Bank’s NPL rate came down from 20.25 percent to 14.50 percent.
However, BASIC Bank’s default loan climbed up to 58.25 percent from 57.55 percent.
During the meeting, they reviewed the overall financial situation of the banks and found that they are in good shape. All the state banks have lowered the interest rate to single digit, the minister said, adding that he would sit with the private banks on the issue.
The meeting also decided to enhance communication with borrowers in order to bring down the default loan rate further.
“If borrowers become defaulters because of logical causes, they will be given a scope. But if anybody borrows money from banks through unfair means, actions will be taken against them as per laws.”
Kamal said the government has taken steps against many people and some of them have been put in jail.
Many willful defaulters who took loans from Janata and formerly Farmers Bank (now Padma Bank) are now in prison, he said.
“Even family members were sent to jail. We will spare nobody.”