Banking Activities June 2015

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Lumbini Bank Introduces Saving Account for Senior Citizens
Lumbini Bank Limited has introduced a new savings deposit product targeted at senior citizens called “Lumbini Aatma Nirbhar Bachat Khata”. This account can be opened by people of 55 years of age and above with a minimum balance of Rs 500 at an interest rate of four percent on a monthly basis. Additionally, the account holders can also avail a host of other benefits such as 0.50% more than the prevailing interest rate on 1 year fixed deposit, free of charge home banking facility, SCT Debit Card with five free monthly withdrawals from any SCT ATM networks, free cheque book, online banking and SMS alert service. With the introduction of this deposit product, the bank believes that it will help the customers under this segment to avail the benefit of security and return from their savings.
 
NMB Bank Rep Office in Malaysia
NMB bank’s representative office in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia started its services from May 7. A member of the bank’s board of directors, T Puraharan CP Ramkrishnan and director of Yong Lian Realty, Jegdevan Nachindram were present at the inauguration. The bank is located in the Wisma Straits Trading building in Lebuh Pasar Besar, Kuala Lumpur.  This is the first representative office opened outside the country by the bank.
 
The representative bank will coordinate with the Malaysian Bank to work as a contact point. It will advise customers on making transactions with Malaysian entrepreneurs. This will help business to grow between the two countries and will help in the exchange of information on existing financial services. Also the representative bank will simplify the commercial transactions of other organizations abroad according to the bank. The bank will run under the direction of Nepal’s central bank, Nepal Rastra Bank and the Malaysian central bank, Negara Malaysia. NMB’s representative office in Malaysia will work to promote business between the two countries.
 
Bok provides Cash and Relief Materials to Quake Victims
Expressing heartfelt condolence to the people who lost their lives in the devastating earthquake of April 25, Bank of Kathmandu has announced to provide Rs 1.5 million for the support of the victims through the Prime Minister’s Disaster Relief Fund. The bank also made an appeal for voluntary contribution and by May 25 had collected more than Rs 1 million from different national and international donors. This money, too, will go to the PM’s Relief Fund. Besides this, bank staff and the bank itself have managed to collect more than Rs 2.8 million which is being used to provide relief to the victims, the bank said in a press statement. The bank also provided regular meals to more than a thousand quake victims in Sankhu and also sent out food, basic construction materials, clothes, blankets, floor mats etc to the victims of different districts such as Raamechhap, Nuwakot, Dhading, Gorkha and Sindhupalchowk.
 
NBA Sets Aside Cash for Reconstruction 
Nepal Bankers’ Association (NBA) said banks were ready to set aside Rs 110 billion (10 percent of their total loans) to finance, refinance reconstruction and rehabilitation of houses and business establishments that were damaged by the April 25 earthquake and following aftershocks.
 
The allocated amount could be used for rebuilding houses, factories, manufacturing facilities, hydropower plants, hospitals, medical colleges, teaching and training establishments, small and medium enterprises, office complexes and other businesses and projects.
 
According to NBA acting president Anil Shah, the amount to be allocated could also be used to cover additional financing for existing businesses as well. Furthermore, the money would also aid commercial farming and micro & medium enterprises. 
 
“However, the bank concerned will make the final decision of assessing the need for additional financing, restructuring of loans, extension of repayment period or waiver of penal interest,” said the NBA. The NRB has also announced to provide soft loans at two percent interest to rebuild houses completely destroyed by the quake through the refinancing scheme and could reduce the interest rate by one percent per annum, if the borrowers repay the installments on time. The association asked the NRB to waive the existing requirement of loan loss provision on all loans related to earthquake victims and urged the banking regulator to increase the credit-to-deposit ratio requirement to 85 percent from the current 80 percent. It has also asked the regulator not to force the banks to make additional provisions for restructuring or rescheduling of loans of earthquake victims.
 
Global IME Bank in Far-West
Global IME Bank Limited has started branchless banking in Meglauli, Baitadi district, making it the bank’s 34th branchless banking service facility. It started the facility to provide financial service to the people of the Far-Western development region. 
 
The Bank has in association with Sakshyam: Access to Finance Programme, also opened two new extension counters in Jogbuda of Dadeldhura district and Patan Municipality of Baitadi District. “The Bank has now reached all 14 zones of Nepal and we plan to go further where there are no banking facilities,” said Dipu Dhoj Adhikari, assistant CEO of the bank.
 
The extension counter in Jodbuda is said to be first of its kind in that area. “We opened an extension counter in association with GIBL considering the problems due to the lack of financial institutions here,” said Baljit Bohara, head of Sakhyam Group during the inauguration ceremony of the Jodbuda counter. 
 
The bank is servicing through 85 branches, 89 ATM, 34 Branchless banking to its customers.
 

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