State Bank Lends To Infrastructure, Energy & Hotels!

Sri Lanka’s Bank of Ceylon said it financed the building of 368 kilometres of roads as part of credit given to the state its main shareholder, 30.9 billion rupees for water projects and 5.2 billion rupees for hotels.

Bank of Ceylon is Sri Lanka’s largest bank by assets.
Last year assets had grown 14 percent to 1.2 trillion rupees and loans had grown 6 percent to 755 billion from 715 billion rupees, the bank said in a statement.

It had loaned 235.4 billion rupees to the power and energy sector. It accounted for 22 percent of commercial bank credit, the banks said. Deposits grew faster than loans at 21 percent to 842 billion rupees amid an industry growth of 15 percent.

In 2013 deposits in Sri Lanka’s banks outpaced growth, allowing the Central Bank to build up foreign reserves and withdraw domestic liquidity.

In 2011 and early 2012 during a balance of payments crisis, loans outstripped deposits as securities in the banking system was bought by the Central Bank with printed money adding rupee reserves to the banking system generating a credit bubble and currency pressure.

Last year the bank’s interest income rose 20 percent to 114 billion rupees, and interest expense rose at a faster 30 percent to 77 billion rupees, allowing net interest income to growth 5 percent to 37 billion rupees.

The bank said its net interest margin narrowed to 3.3 percent to 3.7 percent in 2013.