Despite the negative effects of the coronavirus (Covid-19) crisis, the country’s banking system continues to be stable as Non-Performing Loans (NPLs) ratio dropped to 6 .1 per cent in August 2020, from 6.4 per cent in the previous month, members of the Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN) Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) have said.
The MPC members disclosed this in personal statements at the committee’s meeting in September, which were posted on the apex bank’s website yesterday. For instance, in her personal statements, the Deputy Governor, Financial Systems Stability Directorate at the CBN, Mrs. Aishah Ahmad, stated: “Six months into the pandemic, the financial system continued to show resilience with soundness indicators retaining their robustness, amidst regular stress testing by the CBN. Non-performing loans ratio declined to 6.1 per cent in August 2020, from 6.4 per cent in the previous month, capital adequacy improved to 15.3 per cent from 14.6 per cent over the same period even as net interest margin remained robust.
“Focused implementation of the Loans to Deposit (LDR) policy over the last year continues to promote credit growth to the real sector and lower deposit and lending rates, – which supported banks’ net interest margins. For instance, credit to the economy increased by N3,766.08 billion from N15,567.66 billion at end- May 2019 to N19,333.74 billion at end-August 2020, with significant growth recorded in manufacturing, consumer credit, general commerce and agriculture.”
Similarly, Deputy Governor, Economic Policy, at the apex bank, Kingsley Obiora, said: “Despite the persistence of the pandemic, the financial system has remained relatively stable and robust to withstand shocks. Credit to various sectors witnessed a significant boost from N15.57 trillion to N19.33 trillion between May 2019 and August 2020.