Punjab National Bank To Reduce Net NPAs To 5 Per Cent By 2005

Kozhikode, Februrary 27: | Updated: Feb 28 2003, 05:30am hrs
Punjab National Bank, one of the leading nationalised banks, was all set to bring down its net non-performing assets (NPA) to international standards, having maintained a consistent track record of profitability, PNB chairman, SS Kohli said.

While our net profit during the nine-months ended December 2002 is Rs 601.66 crore, a 42 per cent growth over the corresponding period last year, net NPA also has been brought down to five per cent, he told a press conference.

Stating that PNB had evolved Vision 2012 to offer cost-effective banking solutions, he said the target was to further bring down the net NPA to five per cent by 2005 to match international standards.

The operating profit during the nine-months ended Dec 2002 was Rs 1,638.48 crore, compared to Rs 1,170.13 crore during the corresponding period last year, he said, adding that PNBs initial IPO in Mar 2002 had received an overwhelming response, the issue being oversubscribed by more than 4.2 times.

With total business exceeding Rs 1 lakh crore and aggregate deposits above Rs 66,000 crore, PNB had a market share of 5.3 per cent of banking system deposits in India, Kohli said.

As a medium-term strategy, PNB had taken up an ambitious project of providing Anywhere Anytime Banking under the Centralised Banking Solution, with connectivity to between 1,000 to 1,500 branches in two years. It would also lead to establishment of a Central Data Repository and help realise the potential for cross-selling through new initiatives like Customer Relationship Management.

Kohli said PNB had established links with over 200 respondent banks worldwide to facilitate speedy and timely settlement of forex transactions for clients. Over 100 branches had been provided with SWIFT facility, the fastest mode available for transmitting financial messages.

The export turnover stood at Rs 11,743 crore by Dec 2002, while import turnover was Rs 6,792 crore. PNB had also entered into Rupee Drawing Arrangements with exchange houses in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Kuwait, Qatar, Sultanate of Oman, Bahrain and Singapore. The business had gone up from Rs 141 crore in 1996 to Rs 641 crore in 2001-02, Kohli added.

He said that PNB, which took over Kerala-based Nedungadi Bank (NB) this month following an RBI directive, would protect NB depositors interests. But there was no provision for conversion of NB shares into that of PNB. NB was the seventh bank to be taken over by PNB after public sector New Bank of India in 1993. With the present merger, aggregate business had grown manifold.

PTI