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National Bank Records K19 billion profit

Listed National Bank of Malawi (NBM) PLC has recorded a K19.15 billion profit for the year ending December 31, which is 15 percent increase from what it registered in a previous year.

In the year ending December 31, 2016, the bank registered a profit of K16.6 billion.

A statement signed by NBM Board Chairman, George Partridge, said the institution has achieved an overall growth of 19 percent.

 “The directors recommend a final dividend of K4.2 billion making a total of K9.015 billion in respect of 2017 profits representing K19.30 per ordinary share. The final dividend will be paid after the Annual General Meeting scheduled for June 2018.

“The year started on a positive note with inflation continuing to trend downwards from 20 percent in December 2016 to 7.1 percent in December 2017. Consistent with the inflation trend, the policy rate was reduced three times during the year and commercial banks responded by reducing their base lending rates,” reads the statement in part.

The bank also said agricultural production improved due to good weather and subsequent optimism for a rebound of the economy.

“Notwithstanding the positive trends, economic activity was generally subdued mainly due to low productivity levels on account of the challenges with power supply. Demand for goods and services was negatively affected, attributed to low buying power, especially among rural farmers as prices of maize and other agricultural commodities crashed,” the statement says.

The bank made a significant provision of K5.9 billion for non-performing loans following the maize export ban which accelerated the crash in maize prices, adversely affecting the ability of commodity traders to service debts with the bank.

Looking forward to the future, the bank said it has developed a five-year strategic plan for the period 2018 to 2022 with the objective of consolidating its leadership position in the market.

“Going into the future, the focus will be to delight our customers through acceleration of digitisation of products and processes, driving greater efficiencies and entrenching astute governance and risk management practices,” reads the statement.