“Banking sector will be in stress” | Sunday Observer

“Banking sector will be in stress”

4 October, 2020
Lakshman Silva
Lakshman Silva

The banking sector will continue to be in stress for some time due to the impact of the Easter Sunday attacks and the global pandemic which has suppressed business appetite across the board, DFCC Bank CEO Lakshman Silva told the media at a ceremony to mark the bank’s 65th anniversary last week.

He said the non-performing loan (NPL) ration of the banking sector would increase due to the repercussions of the current crisis which has taken a toll on all sectors particularly the SMEs.

However, he said the banking sector withstood the storms well compared to most banks in the region and added that local banks will emerge strong from the current turmoil.

“DFCC has evolved, diversified and grown to meet the changing needs of Sri Lanka’s resurgent economy, our customers, institutions and the people.

“DFCC would have never reached this position in such a competitive space without the trust placed in us by our customers, backed by the support of our loyal staff,” the bank’s CEO said, adding that the bank has always been and will continue to be focused on developing individuals and businesses to grow through innovative and responsible financial solutions, which will lead to sustainable progress for all.

DFCC which commenced its journey in 1955 was the first bank to be listed on the Colombo Brokers’ Association, the predecessor of the Colombo Stock Exchange. “As we strive in becoming the most customer centric digitally enabled bank we will continue to serve customers with the best customer service and a plethora of financial products from time to time making everyday banking a more convenient and friendly experience,” Lakshman said.DFCC which began as one of the first development banks in Asia, is today a full service commercial bank.

Now widely known as ‘The Bank for Everyone’ DFCC offers a full range of customised banking services across varied customer segments and geographies island wide sustainable value creation across the entire banks operations. As a part of the bank’s 65th anniversary celebrations, the Bank has declared the month of October as the Bank’s anniversary month and has planned a number of activities to engage with varied stakeholders.

The bank will open the state of the art Pinnacle Centre at its new location at Horton Place, exclusively for the pinnacle clientele. The centre will carry out banking transactions speedily, conveniently and in complete confidentiality.

In line with the Bank’s sustainability strategy of promoting cycling for a healthy work-life balance, the Pinnacle centre has been designed to accommodate cycling to the Centre where it is also equipped with changing rooms for customers who want to cycle to this location.DFCC has decided to give back to the community at large by organising numerous CSR activities.

DFCC’s Kurunegala branch will be relocated to a state of the art building to coincide with the Bank’s 65th Anniversary at Colombo Road, Kurunegala.

With the objective of curbing the spread of Covid-19, DFCC has initiated a school project offering hand wash booths to selected rural schools across the country.

A 65% discount on the processing fee of Home Loans, Personal Loans and Leasing facilities will also be offered to retail customers this month.

The ‘DFCC Sahanaya’ concessionary loan scheme was introduced to provide relief to the export-related businesses identifying a significant need in the market owing to the negative impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the local business sector, and the country’s small and medium-size exporters to aid the revival of the sector in the island. The new loan scheme amounting to approximately Rs. 2 billion has been extended to export-related, export-oriented customers in order to provide immediate relief and encourage them to avail market opportunities for the future. DFCC added supplier financing scheme recently to its gamut of products targeting suppliers of Export Agriculture (EAC), such as cinnamon, pepper, cardamom and nutmeg and high-value fruits and vegetables.

The scheme is expected to ease out the working capital cycle of the exporters engaged in EAC, and hence result in a providing a financial solution to strengthen the value chains of EAC.