NIB, ADB Merger On

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The government has started clandestine moves to merge the National Investment Bank (NIB) and the Agricultural Development Bank (ADB), flawless information from the Jubilee House has revealed.

The move is on the table of the Economic Management Team (EMT) and the time frame for the merger has been scheduled for next year because of the December 2020 elections.

The Inquisitor has it that there were divided opinions as to whether the move should be activated this year or not, but there was a firm conclusion that it should be moved to next year, as the merger would create huge furore among Ghanaians.

Already, top management members of the bank that would come out of the merger have been put in place already.

A member of the EMT, who hinted The Inquisitor of the agenda, said that some members of the team were against the move, but others have vowed to make it fall through.

The Vice President heads the EMT, which has the Senior Minister, Mr. Yaw Osafo-Maafo, Finance Minister, Mr. Kenneth Ofori-Atta, and other prominent persons within government as members.

NIB in particular has been fraught with lots of bad news in recent times that the bank is believed to have lost its bearing.

The government was forced to inject some GHC800 million into its operations to help close the bank’s capital deficit and boost its operations.

The government has injected GH¢800 million into the National Investment Bank (NIB) to help close the bank’s capital deficit and boost its operations to support the national industrialisation agenda.

The injection of funds, which is in the form of a bond issued to the bank earlier in August, this year, is part of efforts to make the bank compliant with the Bank of Ghana’s (BoG’s) requirements on minimum stated capital for banks and also make it more competitive.

The NIB, which was established in 1963 to drive domestic industrialisation, has suffered significant turbulence over the past few years.

The bank has posted losses consistently in recent times and now has a capital deficit of GH¢2.2 billion, according to an assessment conducted on its capital position last year.

Debt recovery was a major headache for the bank and there are murmurings that some huge political persons were behind the current predicament of the bank.

The ADB, on the other hand, is widely seen to be doing tremendously well, as it continues to make progress in various fronts.

The bank posted an impressive financial growth in its half year-results, even in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic that has wreaked havoc to all sectors of the economy, including the financial sector.

The bank’s total asset grew by more than GHC800 million or 17.17% from GHC4.0billion to GHC4.4billion on the back of 26.6% growth in the loan book from GHC1.22billion to GHC1.66billion from June 2019 to June 2020.

ADB has been able to increase its deposits, despite the uncertainty of customers about how and what to save.

The good standing of ADB is suspected to be the main reason why the establishment was jittery in moving swiftly towards the planned merger.

There are persons within government who also feel that the planned merger could be a money-making agenda for certain persons, as the private sector would be roped into the game.

Plan to merge the Agricultural Development Bank (ADB) and the National Investment Bank (NIB) into the proposed National Development Bank (NDB) was high on government’s agenda until it was cancelled in October 2018.

The cancellation of the merger at that time was at the behest of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.

The President was said to have expressed the government’s commitment to resource the two banks individually to enable them to play their traditional roles of stimulating investments in the manufacturing sector and transforming agriculture and agro-processing through strategic lending.