The latest statistics released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) has revealed that Nigeria’s banking sector recorded N1.676 trillion worth of non-performing loans as of the end of March 2019.
There are about twenty-one banks in Nigeria. Nairametrics can confirm that their gross loans stood at N15.480 trillion, while the loans after specific provisions stood at N13.739 trillion in the period under review.
NPLs on a Downward Path: A total of N2.18 trillion was recorded in the first quarter of 2018 as non-performing loans. This figure dropped to N1.93 trillion in the second quarter, only to pick up in the third quarter of 2018 at N2.24 trillion, before declining again in the fourth quarter to N1.79 trillion.
The ratio of the non-performing loans to total loans for the first quarter of 2019 was 10.83 per cent, while non-performing loans to total loans after specific provisions was 12.2 per cent.
What this means: There is a clear positive medium-term impact on the economy when non-performing loans decline. It is widely acknowledged that economies of countries that constantly find solutions to its NPLs perform well even as the supply of credit increases.
Why this matters: Non-performing loans are a burden for both lenders and borrowers. According to a report, NPLs reduces credit availability, distort the allocation of credit, negatively affect market confidence, and slow economic growth. It is always advisable for regulators and stakeholders not to ignore NPLs’ problems in order to avoid deterioration.
What you need to know: The Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria, Mr. Ahmed Kuru, recently called for the revisit of the failed Bank Act. This, he believes, will make operatives in the banking sector to accountable.
Note that bank employees risk losing their jobs when the debtors they approved a loan for doesn’t pay back as when due or refuses to finance its loan or the loan goes bad.
Earlier Development: Earlier on, we reported that the Committee of Banks’ Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) disclosed plans to go tougher in efforts to bring blacklisted defaulters to book. The CEOs have perfected plans for all banks to cooperate and collaborate in order to fish out all defaulters.