Banks boost lending as production rallies

Monday, Sep 16, 2013 16:17

Banks are seeking to boost lending as enterprises begin to see more business opportunities with improving economic situation. — Photo

HA NOI (Biz Hub) ― Commercial banks are adjusting interest rates to boost lending as demand for capital rallies, according to Tuoi tre (Youth) newspaper.

Asia Commercial Bank (ACB) general director Do Minh Toan said that the bank's lending growth had improved after staying slow for many months, with more enterprises seeking loans to further production and business.

ACB, where loans have increased 7 per cent this year, recently raised deposit interest rates to attract more money for business financing. It now offers a three-month deposit rate of 7 per cent, the cap stipulated by the State Bank of Viet Nam (SBV) for short-term deposits. For terms of six months or more, the rate ranges from 7.3-8.8 per cent.

At Vietcombank (VCB), outstanding loans have expanded 2.8 per cent since the beginning of the year, despite the 1.47 per cent decline recorded in the first six months.

VCB executive officer Nghiem Xuan Thanh attributed the increase to the fact that businesses needed more credit in the past two months, and said the bank expected to achieve credit growth of at least 10 per cent this year based on this surge in demand.

The bank, which in May was one of the first to cut interest rates to assist struggling firms, also started to raise deposit rates. The highest deposit rate at the bank is now 7.75 per cent.

Sacombank increased deposit rates to the 7 per cent cap for terms of up to six months on September 11, while Agribank, Orient Commercial Bank and Navibank lifted their rates to 8-10.8 per cent for terms of 12 months or more.

Sai Gon - Ha Noi Bank (SHB) general director Nguyen Van Le said the bank had cut lending interest rates to 6.5-8 per cent for businesses due to better market consumption.

"The situation is brighter now and enterprises are absorbing capital much better than they did a few months ago, when banks could hardly approve companies' borrowing proposals," he said.

Nguyen Hoang Minh, deputy director of the SBV's HCM City branch, said that total lending in the city grew 5.21 per cent in the first eight months of the year, with a significant amount of loans going to small- and medium-sized enterprises.

Le Tham Duong from the Banking University of HCM City said the world economic situation was gradually improving, especially in Viet Nam's major export markets such as the US, EU and Southeast Asia. With improved exports and increasing material imports for production, enterprises were beginning to see more business opportunities.

He added that medium- and long-term deposit rates – currently 9-10 per cent at many banks – were quite attractive to depositors, as long as inflation stayed below 10 per cent.

With demand for loans expected to increase in the final months of the year and banks speeding up lending, Minh said, the national credit growth target of 12 per cent for 2013 could be achieved or even surpassed.

The SBV said in a report late last week that interest rates were still showing stable development. ― VNS

Comments (0)