IOB focuses on MSME, to lend more in 2 years: Official

IOB focuses on MSME, to lend more in two years: Official

Laying more focus on MSME segment, the Indian Overseas Bank (IOB) would increase its lending to the sector from the present Rs 31,000 crore to Rs 50,000 crore in a couple of years from now, a top official of the bank said on Friday.

To focus on the MSME, which is the need of the hour, the bank has converted 250 branches, including 100 in Tamil Nadu, into MSME-centric branches and given training to 700 employees for the purpose, IOB managing director and CEO Karnam Sekar told reporters here.

Through its outreach programme, the bank officials are meeting the industrialists in the sector to know about the problems being faced by them, he said.

After getting the suggestions, the feedback would be placed before the Board of the bank to frame a policy to increase the MSME portfolio to Rs 50,000 crore, which could be in one year to 24 months, Sekar said.

On performance, the bank, which was in the red for the last four-and-a-half years and making loss in the last eight quarters, is hopeful of making profit in the fourth quarter of current financial year, he said.

In the third quarter ended December 2019, IOB reported a net loss of Rs 6,075 crore as against a net loss of Rs 346 crore during the corresponding quarters in the previous year on account of higher provisioning of Rs 6,664 crore made for bad debts, Sekar said.

Stating that the gross NPA has been brought down to 17.12 per cent at the end of December as compared to 23.76 per cent last fiscal, he said that due to provision made during the quarter, the net NPA ratio improved to 5.81 per cent, which is less than 6 per cent prescribed by RBI.

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