Money & Banking

SBI’s retail credit posts 6-7% growth: Khara

Mumbai | Updated on October 07, 2020

State Bank of India (SBI) is witnessing credit growth of about 6-7 per cent as of now, with the overall credit growth touching about 70-80 per cent of pre-Covid-19 level, according to thr newly appointed Chairman, Dinesh Kumar Khara.

Khara, who joined SBI as a Probationary Officer in 1984, took charge as the chief of India’s largest bank on Wednesday.

“So, I think, I am quite sanguine that our retail credit growth in general is doing well.

“And, also when it comes to corporate credit growth, I think, we have to be mindful of the fact that many of the corporates are not just going to the credit market, they are also going to the capital market (or for that matter they are also going to the debt capital market),” explained Khara.

So, if the growth in SBI’s non-SLR portfolio (the bank’s investment in non-convertible debentures and commercial papers issued by India Inc) is included, the credit growth will be about 10 per cent, he added.

“So, I would say that perhaps we will have to readjust to the new realities. And, we will have to readjust to the corporates’ desire to meet their (funding) requirements, whether through credit or through the investment market.

“We have got the wherewithal to meet all their requirements,” emphasised Khara.

Referring to the current level of credit growth, the SBI chief felt that the bank is quite comfortably placed as of now. The bank would like to reach out to the capital market for any incremental capital-raising as and when it gets to see the traction for the building up of assets.

“And, maybe…for that we will have to wait and watch for some more time to come,” said Khara.

Restructuring manageable

SBI is closely observing the behaviour relating to customers who are showing interest in restructuring of loans.

Referring to the Bank creating a website, which allows people to enquire regarding Covid-19-related restructuring, Khara said: “When we look at the hit (on the website), that itself is a reflection of the kind of interest that people have for looking at restructuring.

“So, I would say that whatever numbers we have seen till now and considering our book, I think it is very much manageable.”

When it comes to corporate restructuring, SBI has not seen many of the corporates reaching out as of now.

“Yes, of course, there are some. But whatever numbers are seen, it is nothing very unusual. I would say that it is within manageable limits,” Khara said.

The new SBI Chief underscored that the top most priority for the Bank is the safety of its employees who are serving all customers, the safety of its customers and also the quality of the book, which it has been in a position to maintain till now.

“We would like to see that we are in a position to come to the rescue if at all somebody needs any help. So, that is something which I would like to emphasise upon,” said Khara.

Published on October 07, 2020

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