Lower Pra Rural Bank profit up 55%

The Lower Pra Rural Bank, in the Western Region, made a profit of GH¢828,232, before tax, in 2010 as against GH¢534,454 in 2009 representing an increase of 55 percent.

The Chairman of the Board of Directors of the bank, Mr Nathaniel Arthur made this known at the bank’s 23rd Annual General Meeting in Shama, at the weekend.

He said the bank’s total assets stood at GH¢21, 441,752 as at 31st December 2010, as against GH¢16, 095,440 in 2009, seeing an increase of 33 percent.

The Board Chairman noted that the bank mobilized a total of GH¢18, 039,588 deposits as against GH¢12,951,243 in 2009, an increase of 39 percent, adding that, it disbursed GH¢9, 598,789, as loans to its clients, representing a 42 percent increase.

Mr Arthur noted that, the bank’s shareholders’ fund stood at GH¢2, 881,193 in 2010 as against GH¢2, 493,584 in 2009, representing an increase of 15 percent.

He said the bank granted loans totalling GH¢378, 088.41 to women groups, which had contributed to the growth of the bank.

“The bank introduced the traditional Susu scheme to assist people living within our catchment area. This has enabled them to solicit for loans at a reasonable interest rate. The total loans and savings as at December 31, 2010 for Susu contributors amounted to GH¢4,003.464 and GH¢2,900.866 respectively”, he said.

Mr Arthur said the bank had embarked on several community development projects, such as the expansion of the Out Patients Department (OPD) of the Shama clinic, building a kitchen for the Shama Senior High School, provision of books, computers, and building materials to primary and junior high schools in the area.

He said the projects had brought comfort and relief to patients, teachers, pupils and the general public.

The Board Chairman said the bank had established an education scholarship scheme for the wards and children of stakeholders of the bank, and so far, 82 students had benefitted from it, to the tune of GH¢30,500,

He urged beneficiary students to study hard to become responsible adults, adding that, it had provided employment opportunities to the different social classes in the region.

The Board Chairman said it is providing quality banking services to communities such as Aboadze, Shama, Essikadu, Daboase, Affiakuma, Kwesimintsim, Axim Mpohor, and Kojokrom.

“We do have three mobilization centres at Market circle, Assorku Essaman and Inchaban and intends to extend the services to Nkroful, in the Ellembelle District very soon”, he said.

The bank, he noted, had supported the various assemblies in its catchment area such as Shama District, Mpohor Wassa East, Nzema East and the Sekondi-Takoradi metropolis.

He pledged to reposition the bank well to benefit from the oil discovery in the region and urged more people to purchase shares from the bank.

The Managing Director of the ADB Apex Bank, Mr Eric Osei Bonsu charged the management and board of the bank to provide constant training and orientation to the staff, to enable them to provide quality customer service.

“In this way, you will maintain the current customers and bring more people to your fold”, he said.

He said there is stiff competition in the banking environment and that the staff should be trained in Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in order to keep up with the pace of modern banking methods.

Mr Bonsu suggested that the rural community banks should undertake cooperative mergers so as to mobilize more resources to provide better financial services and also meet the minimum capital requirement proposed by the Bank of Ghana (BoG) for their continuous stay in business.

Source: GNA

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