Business News Mon, 30 Jun 2014

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Amenfiman Rural Bank records profit

The Amenfiman Rural Bank Limited made profit before tax of 4,020,732. 98 Ghana Cedis in 2013 as against 2,247,812. 19 Ghana Cedis recorded in 2012, Dr. Toni Aubynn, chairman of the Bank, said on Saturday.

He said the bank’s 79 per cent growth in profit was achieved as a result of sound managerial decisions, empowered and motivated workforce and improved operational efficiencies. Dr. Aubynn was delivering his annual report at the 30th annual general meeting of the bank at Wasa Akropong.

He said, “We are on course with our strategic plans and the Board will continue to support management and staff to deliver better performance in the years ahead”. Dr. Aubynn said total income went up by 71 per cent from 6,032,351 point 29 Ghana Cedis in 2012 to 10,319,319 point 09 Ghana Cedis in 2013.

He said the significant growth was attributed to the performance of various income generating products rolled out and in the mist of rising cost of business, the way forward is to create more innovative products and services that have the potential to increase revenue.

To this end, the Board and Management would continue to introduce more innovative products in the coming years, Dr. Aubynn added. He said the Bank’s deposits also saw significant growth of 32 per cent from 32,009,952 Ghana Cedis in 2012 to 44,099,290 Ghana Cedis in 2013.

Dr. Aubynn said the Bank’s mobilization strategies are on course and Management was encouraged to keep up this performance and assured that the Bank will continue to pay attractive returns on depositors’ funds.

He said there were significant growths in investment activities during the year under review and the Bank’s investment in short term money market instruments increased significantly from 18,146,714. 37 Ghana Cedis in 2012 to 27,024,324. 31 Ghana Cedis in 2013. Dr. Aubynn said the Bank’s total asset also went up significantly by 46 per cent from 38,761,704. 96 Ghana Cedis in 2012 to 55,463,363 Ghana Cedis in 2013, reflecting the general growth in all financial indicators during the year.

He said the Bank invested a total of 43,120 Ghana Cedis in community activities and is financing the construction of a Laundry project at the Wasa Akropong Government Hospital and a Cold Room for the District Health Directorate.

Dr. Aubynn said the Board has increased the amount awarded to beneficiaries of its scholarship scheme by 100 per cent from 300 Ghana Cedis per year to 600 Ghana Cedis per year. He said the Board has also doubled the investments in the bursary scheme as well in recognition of the general increase in fees at the senior high school level and the Bank’s commitment to invest in the future of children.

To this end, the Board transferred 5 per cent of the bank net profit after tax to fund its community investment activities including the scholarship scheme, Dr. Aubynn said. Mr. Raymond Amanfu, Director of the other financial institutions supervision department of the Bank of Ghana, said the total assets of Rural and Community Banks (RCB) in the country stood at 1. 863 billion Ghana Cedis as at the end of April this year.

He said the RCB sector constituted 3.7 per cent of the asset size of the entire banking sector. Mr. Amanfu said loans and advances were the major constituent of the total assets of RCBs, with a share of 39.5 per cent while investment was the second largest category with a share of 30.10 per cent as at the end of April this year. He said it is expected that RCBs share of the industry’s total assets would grow to 10 per cent by 2017.

Mr. Amanfu said although rural banks continue to improve their performance; their relatively low level of capital is a matter of concern. He said for RCBs to be more effective, efficient and play their role of financial intermediation, they must make conscious effort to improve their shareholders funds.

“RCBs must strategise to mobilize more shares and reduce cost of operation’, Mr. Amanfu said. He asked RCBs to consider listing on Ghana Alternative Market (GAX) as this would serve as a means to raise fresh capital into the banks saying listing on the GAX would enhance the transparency and accountability in the operations of RCBs due to rules and guidelines that govern listed companies on the GAX.

Mr. Amanfu said RCBs would further benefit from the expertise of qualified people on their boards and the mix of their shareholders would be diversified and enriched.

He said RCBs must resist the temptation of paying unsustainable interest rates on time or fixed deposits as such rates could have adverse effect on their continued viability, maintain high standard of internal controls and strengthen their risk management and internal audit functions as a means of protecting customer deposits and the interest of shareholders.

Later, Dr Aubynn and Mr. Moses Ampong were re-elected as the chairman and vice chairman respectively of the bank by popular acclamation in an election supervised by the Electoral Commission.

Source: GNA

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