Banks' defaulted loans total Tk 1.82 trillion

Bangladesh BankCollected

The amount of defaulted loans increased by over Tk 36 billion to about Tk 1.83 trillion in March this year from Tk 1.47 trillion in December last year, according to Bangladesh Bank.

Bad loans grew by 9 per cent in December last year, while the figure stood at about 11.11 per cent of the total loans in March. Defaulted loans increased at all banks including state-run, private, foreign and specialized banks during this period.

Explaining the reasons behind the rise in defaulted loans, Bangladesh Bank spokesperson Mezbaul Haque said bad loans surged in state-run banks, and as well as interest on defaulted loans was also added to the previous amount. The central bank has increased monitoring in addition to supervision and coordination, he added.

According to the central bank, bad loans in state-owned banks grew to 842.21 billion taka in March from 657.81 billion taka in December last year.

Sonali Bank’s defaulted loans rose to Tk 149.88 billion in March from Tk 133.4 billion in December last year. Janata Bank saw an increase in the defaulted loan by Tk 54.86 billion in that time, with the current amount standing at Tk 304.95 billion.

In the same period, the defaulted loans of Rupali Bank rose by Tk 3.14 billion to Tk 103.57 billion while the BASIC bank’s defaulted loan amount increased by Tk 930 million and currently stands at Tk 82.97 billion. Agrani Bank’s defaulted loan has decreased by Tk 6.12 billion to Tk 208.64 billion.

As of March, defaulted loans stood at Tk 82.97 billion in BASIC Bank, and Tk 8.73 billion in Bangladesh Development Bank PLC’s (BDBP).

State-run banks’ bad loans grew to 27 per cent in March from 20.99 per cent in December.

According to the central bank, the private bank’s defaulted loans rose to 889 billion taka in March from 709.81 billion taka in December last year, while bad loans at foreign banks increased to 34 billion taka from 32 billion taka.

The amount of defaulted loans in two specialized banks -- Bangladesh Krishi Bank and Rajshahi Krishi Unnayan Bank -- rose to 13.88 per cent to Tk 57 billion in March from 13.87 per cent to 56.69 per cent.

Like the state-owned banks, defaulted loans surged at private banks even though Bangladesh Bank continued monitoring and appointing former and incumbent bureaucrats on the boards of banks.

The central bank asked four state owned banks to bring down the defaulted loans within 10 per cent in 2024 as part of the loan conditions of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), but bad loans continues to surge.

Bangladesh Bank officials said big clients of banks are mostly close to the government and their loans remains out of the central bank’s monitoring. Some loans have also turned into non-performing loans. However, the amount of defaulted loans will increase because of redefining terms of bad loans, they added.