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Bangladesh Bank to monitor big loans
Publication Date : 18-02-2013
Bangladesh's central bank has introduced a system for direct and close monitoring of big loans in the context of various cases of embezzlement including that of the Hall-Mark Group.
Bangladesh Bank (BB) Governor Atiur Rahman on Sunday inaugurated the operations of 'large-loan monitoring software' at the Bank's headquarters in Dhaka.
“In the existing system, it is not possible to get an idea about the nature, evolution and future of loans taken by a borrower, but under the new system almost all large borrowers will be kept under strict monitoring,” Rahman said at the function.
Banks will have to maintain a database of large borrowers and make the data available online for the central bank.
The data to be submitted include the borrowers' debt-equity ratio, profitability, loan concentration in a sector, and the amount of non-funded facility converted to funded facility.
About 25-30 per cent of the banks' total loans are in the hands of large borrowers, according to BB statistics.
Sonali Bank's Ruposhi Bangle Hotel branch had given Hall-Mark and five other companies a total of 35.47 billion Bangladeshi taka (US$447 million) in loans and a large part of the loans was non-funded through bill purchase.
These loans created a big liquidity crisis in the entire banking system.
The BB has so far taken various steps to prevent the recurrence of such scams, and monitoring large loans using the new software is one of these.
The governor said the BB has taken up multipronged programmes to bring strategic changes in its monitoring. He said the central bank has been monitoring the overall situation in the banking sector through various measures.
Rahman said the new system will allow the BB to know how the non-funded loans turn into funded loans, their continuous evolution and the amount.
Due to non-funded loans, the loan portfolios of the banks become risky and leads to increase in default loans.
The software will enable BB to forecast on any liquidity crisis and advise the banks on corrective measures to take, Rahman said.
*US$1= 79.2 Bangladeshi taka