NRB to call stakeholders’ meet to set up infra bank

Kathmandu, November 14

As few banks and financial institutions have submitted the expression of interest to be promoter of Infrastructure Development Bank, Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) — the central regulatory and monetary authority — is going to organise a stakeholders’ meet to finalise the stake of the promoters of various sectors.

Following the central bank’s licensing policy to set up infrastructure bank, some financial institutions namely, Global IME Bank, NIC Asia Bank and Siddhartha Bank, among others, have jointly expressed interest to be the promoter of the bank that the government is going to establish to bridge the gap in infrastructure financing. The licensing policy has barred the promoters to chip in money as promoters’ stake with the funds borrowed from the banks.

Narayan Prasad Paudel, spokesperson for NRB, said that the central bank will organise a stakeholders’ meet to take stock of promoters’ commitment.

The central bank had issued the licensing policy in the second week of August that has set the paid-up capital requirement of Rs 20 billion for the infrastructure bank.

According to the licensing policy, the promoter shareholders must have at least 51 per cent of shares while a minimum of 30 per cent ownership must be allocated to the public.

Such bank can provide up to 0.2 per cent of shares to its employees. Foreign banks like Export-Import Bank of different countries are also allowed to be a promoter of the bank. For the foreign joint venture, a foreign bank or financial institution can have minimum 20 per cent to maximum 85 per cent of stake, in which 15 per cent must be allotted to the public.

The government has envisioned to bring ExIm banks or multilateral banks like Asian Development Bank and World Bank as promoter of the Infrastructure Development Bank. However, banks and financial institutions have said that they can chip in more if the government is willing to raise their stake. Though nothing concrete has materialised yet, the government is also planning to bring in government-owned financial institutions like Citizen Investment Trust and Employees Provident Fund, and also life and non-life insurance companies as promoter of the bank.

The government (Ministry of Finance) will inject 10 per cent of the capital or Rs two billion in the Infrastructure Development Bank.

Akin to others, the Infrastructure Development Bank can issue loans and make equity investment on infrastructure projects and issue both domestic and foreign currency denominated financial instruments to mobilise financial resources for larger infrastructure projects. It will mobilise long-term deposits, and issue infrastructure bonds and debentures to arrange resources for the infrastructure financing.