Kathmandu, June 17 :

Dr Bhola Nath Chalise, recently appointed chairman of Rastriya Banijya Bank (RBB), has stressed on the reform initiatives in RBB, which should go fast now and in a productive manner. He was addressing a gathering of the bank’s employees at ‘the best performance award giving ceremony’ held in the capital.

Dr Chalise sought employees’ support to make reform programmes more effective.

On the occasion, Bir Bikram Rayamajhi, deputy governor of the Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) said, “If the employees cooperate with the management, non-performing

assets (NPA) of the bank will reduce to 15 per cent from the present 50 per cent. If all branch offices of the RBB could work hard on loan recovery initiatives, there would not be any difficulty to have a sound financial management,” he added.

Bruce Henderson, CEO of RBB, said that the bank has registered 50.96 per cent NPA during the third quarter of this year compared to 57.60 per cent during the same period last year. “NPA of the bank would reduce to 46 per cent by July,” he said.

Similarly, operating profit of RBB during the third quarter this year has increased to Rs 513 million from an earlier Rs 280 million in the same period last year, he said, adding that the bank has recovered Rs 1.59 billion during the nine months of the current fiscal year.

Henderson mentioned that office expenses have also gone down from previous year’s Rs 166 million to Rs 148 million in the third quarter of the curre-nt fiscal year. In the proc-ess of modernising the ba-nk with latest technologi-es, he informed that RBB has already computerised 45 branches. And over 3,000 staff members have taken Rs 65,000 each for a period of 20-year computer loan that is interest free and aimed at building the skill of staff.