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Bankers invite businesses for loans with insistence, borrowers remain cold

Commercial banks have launched a series of promotion campaigns, inviting people to loans at preferential interest rates. However, their invitation has not been replied to.

VietNamNet Bridge – Commercial banks have launched a series of promotion campaigns, inviting people to loans at preferential interest rates. However, their invitation has not been replied to.

Thanh, an office worker, said she does not answer the calls from unfamiliar subscriptions numbers these days. She said most of the calls are from bank marketing officers, who tried to persuade her to borrow money from their banks to buy new houses or upgrade the existing houses.

Thanh is always very busy in the morning, because she has to make reports to the boss. Therefore, she feels inconvenient when having to spend too much time talking with the bank officers, while she does not have the demand for loans.

However, it seems that bank officers do not believe this, and they keep contacting her regularly to offer loans.

Commercial banks nowadays all try to boost in lending to fulfill the plan on credit growth set up earlier this year. They now lend to import-export companies at 9-10 percent per annum only, while the interest rates were sky high some months ago, at 19-20 percent per annum. If borrowing in foreign currencies, clients would have to pay 5-7 percent only in interest rates, if they commit to sell foreign currencies to the banks.

Sacombank has launched a 50 billion dong credit package designed for individual clients, offering the low interest rates of 10 percent per annum and the 30 billion dong package to small and medium enterprises at the interest rates of 13 percent.

Dao Nguyen Vu, Deputy General Director of Sacombank, said the bank has launched over 20 credit packages so far this year, offering the loans worth 13,450 billion dong and 180 million dollars at the preferential interest rates

Unlike previous months, when banks were choosy about clients and refused to give loans, they now tend to welcome clients through solicitation. Reports showed that small banks’ liquidity has been improved, while big banks have abundant capital.

Though banks have been trying to push up lending by slashing lending interest rates, the outstanding loans still have been increasing very slowly.

At Sacombank, in the first 11 months of the year, the outstanding loans increased by over 9 percent only, while the bank’s managers think the credit growth rate for the whole year 2012 would be no more than 12 percent, lower than the targeted level of 17 percent.

Eximbank’s General Director, Truong Van Phuoc, has confirmed that the interest rates have been on the decrease. Eximbank’s credit growth rate is minus 5-6 percent.

However, Phuoc does not think the minus growth rate is too bad. “In the current conditions, it is necessary to control the credit quality, or the bad debt ratio would skyrocket,” Phuoc said.

Pham Linh, Deputy General Director of OCB, also said the demand for loans is very modest. Only rice and rubber exporters have demand for loans, and they can satisfy the bank’s requirements to access loans. Meanwhile, the demand from importers is very low, though it is now the year end sale season.

The bank’s outstanding loans growth rate in the first 11 months of the year was 11 percent only. Linh said OCB is considering pouring capital into the real estate sector. However, he said this is a sensitive business, and every bank would be cautious when dealing with the special clients.

Nguyen Hoang Minh from the HCM City Branch of the State Bank said only a half of the credit package worth 200 trillion dong at the interest rate of 13 percent per annum has been disbursed over the last two months.



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