The Nigerian Export-Import Bank (NEXIM) hopes to grow its balance sheet to N1.2trillion in 2022.
This represents about 750 per cent of its current balance sheet of N158.84bn.
Mr Abba Bello, the bank’s managing director, who disclosed this during an interaction with journalists in Abuja on Thursday, hinged the ambitious target on the strategic plan of the current management.
According to him, “All the factors hindering growth have been resolved. So, the bank is now on a growth trajectory.”
Bello said by the time he took over the 30-year old institution, it was almost comatose.
He said: “When the current management took over in 2017, the bank was almost insolvent. 94 per cent of the loans were non-performing. The last financial statement was in 2014, the bank was involved in other things apart from banking and the state of the bank was a discouragement to staff members who were willing to do the right thing.”
Bello added that the current management had to embark on reforming the bank, a process which he said had started yielding positive results.
Bello said before his assumption of duty, the bank recorded a loss of N8.03billion in 2016.
“This was reduced to N567million in 2017,” he said.
The bank moved to profitability in 2018, posting a profit of N1.09billion. This was scaled up to N2.23billion in 2019. There was a slight side in profit in 2020 as the bank posted a profit of N1.28billion, a situation Bello said was caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
His words, “The profit decline in 2020 was due to the impact of Covid-19 on businesses, which necessitated the interest rebate and moratorium extension granted by the bank to its customers.”
Throwing light on the efforts of his management to reposition the bank, Bello said, “We have introduced aggressive debt recovery and proactive loan work out measures leading to an increase in overall recoveries from the only N200million in December 2016 to N4.76billion and US$750,000 between January 2017 and January 2021. In addition assets worth about N7billion are currently up for sale.
“Continued efforts to clean up the balance sheet and improvement in risk management practices with new loans granted from 2018 performing 100 per cent, a major departure from the huge non-performing loans in the past.”
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NEXIM targets N1.2trn balance sheet in one year