SBI NPA provisioning up three-fold between 2008-09 and 2010-11

This provision in 2010-11 includes a countercyclical buffer of Rs 2,330 crore toward achieving the 70 per cent Provision Coverage Ratio prescribed by the Reserve Bank of India over-and-above the prudential provision, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee said in a written reply to a question in the Rajya Sabha. The NPAs have gone up substantially in agriculture, small scale industries and corporates, he said.

During 2010-11, outstanding loans of Rs 210.34 crore given by SBI to Shah Alloys Ltd turned into NPAs. At the same time, an outstanding loan of Rs 193.99 crore to Indorama Synthetics became a NPA, he said.

Meanwhile, in a separate written reply, Minister of State for Finance Namo Narain Meena said the government has received a proposal from SBI for raising capital through various instruments -- Qualified Institutional Placement (QIP), Preferential Allotment, a Follow-On Public Offer and a rights issue.

The proposal is under examination, Meena added. In response to another question, Meena said in line with the principles of preserving the long-term value of the country's foreign exchange reserve in terms of purchasing power, minimising risk and volatility in returns and maintaining liquidity, the RBI holds foreign currency assets (FCAs) in major convertible currencies' instruments.

These include deposits of other countries' central banks, the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) and top-rated foreign commercial banks, besides securities representing the debt of sovereigns and supranational institutions with a residual maturity not exceeding 10 years, to provide a strong bias toward capital preservation and liquidity, Meena said.

At the end of March, 2011, Meena said out of the total foreign currency assets of USD 274.3 billion, USD 142.1 billion was invested in securities, USD 126.9 billion was deposited with other central banks, the BIS and IMF and USD 5.3 billion was placed with External Asset Managers.

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