Public sector banks are fast adapting to digital means as they have cleared digital lending of ₹83,091 crore in the financial year ending March 2022.

As part of EASE 4.0 reforms, state-owned banks were asked to focus on digital lending, co-lending with non-banking firms, agriculture financing, and technological resilience for 24x7 banking.

The Enhanced Access and Service Excellence (EASE) program, driven by Indian Banks' Association (IBA), also stressed on data analytics, automation, and digitization.

Launched in 2018, EASE programme sets a common reforms agenda for public-sector banks every year. It aims to foster new-age reforms in PSBs to improve profitability, asset quality, customer service, and digital capabilities.

The fourth edition of EASE focused on technology-enabled simplified and collaborative banking. FM Nirmala Sitharaman felicitated top performing banks on various parameters, according to a IBA statement.

Top banks

Bank of Baroda received the first prize among all PSBs for the best overall performance on PSB Reforms EASE Agenda 4.0.

Indian Bank emerged as the ‘Top Improver.’

Canara Bankwon first prize under the Institutionalizing Prudent Banking category, while under the governance and outcome-centric HR, Union Bank of India was chosen as leader.

As part of EASE reforms, banks achieved ₹6,597 crore of co-lending through partnerships with NBFCs during FY22. Besides, there was on-boarding of 9.4 crore customers on mobile banking platforms and 79 per cent financial transactions carried out on mobile, and internet banking platforms.

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The meeting will also review progress made on other welfare measures being implemented by banks/FIs

The agenda for the fifth edition of EASE was unveiled this year by the Minister of Finance, it said, adding, the reforms program has now been expanded into EASENext with the introduction of the three-year Strategic Roadmap Program.

EASE 5.0 will continue to focus on driving an enhanced digital experience along with data-driven, integrated, and inclusive banking across all banks, it said.

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