United Bank of India on Saturday said it expects to recover Rs 400-500 crore in cash this fiscal as it gears up to hasten its recovery process.

“We expect to recover Rs 400-500 crore in cash in this fiscal,” bank’s Executive Director Deepak Narang told reporters here today.

United Bank non-performing assets, NPA, increased to 3.47 per cent from 3.42 per cent in March 2012, with major default occurring in aviation and steel sectors, the bank said in a statement.

At present, bank’s gross NPA stands at Rs 2,120 crore while net NPA is at Rs 1,096 crore.

“Our NPA has grown marginally by 7 basis points and loan defaults are in aviation, steel and MSME sector,” he said, while attributing the rise in NPA to slowing of the economy.

Asserting that the loan recovery is needed to be quickened, Narang further said the borrowers getting stay from Debt Recovery Tribunals on “flimsy grounds” also had an impact on recovery process.

The Kolkata-based bank has also plans to open 84 new branches in current financial year to deepen its presence in southern and northern areas.

“We will open 80-84 new branches and it will be mainly in south and north regions,” he said.

UBI has strong presence in north-east areas with a total branch network of 1,682. Looking at a growth of 18-20 per cent in its total business, United Bank will be focusing on lending to retail and MSME sectors, Narang said.

“Our thrust will be on retail including housing and MSME sectors,” he added. United Bank’s total business stands at Rs 1.53 lakh crore with Rs 63,000 crore of advances.

The bank has also planned to expand its reach in overseas market by opening a representative office in Myanmar and it will be the first bank to have presence in that country.

“We have received approval for opening our representative office in Myanmar as there is a huge potential for business in that country because of good trade relations with India,” he said. UBI has a representative office in Bangladesh.

(This article was published on August 18, 2012)
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