Sonali Bank, BDBL sign merger agreement

Sonali Bank, BDBL sign merger agreement

State owned Bangladesh Development Bank Limited (BDBL) has signed an agreement with another state owned Sonali Bank for “voluntary merger”.

The agreement was signed at Bangladesh Bank, where the representatives of Sonali Bank, BDBL and the central bank governor Abdur Rouf Talukder and the relevant officials were present.

However, no representative of the government was present at the event though two state owned banks were signing an agreement.

The assets and liabilities of the two commercial banks will be assessed now before any further proceedings of the merger.

Meanwhile, the BDBL employees are panicking over their jobs as according to the central bank’s policy, the bank that is acquiring the weak bank can take decisions in this regard based on the performances of the employees after three years.

BDBL chairman Shamima Nargis said, “BDBL is in a weaker position than before in only one of the four indices. The index is defaulted loan. The amount was 41 per cent. I have brought it down to 34 per cent in the past one year. It is not possible to bring down the rate to 5-10 or 15 per cent from 34 in just six months.”

Speaking about the open letter the BDBL employees sent to the authorities, Shamima Nargis said the board of directors of the two banks made a decision on merger considering many issues. Whatever is better has been decided.

Speaking at the agreement signing event, Sonali Bank chairman Ziaul Hasan Siddiqui said, “We thought a lot before reaching the merger decision. We have taken the decision after discussion among ourselves, not in the face of any pressure. Two of the banks have different sorts of experience. We shall move forward with those.”

Sonali Bank managing director Md. Afzal Karim informed the media that currently the bank has a deposit of over Tk 1.5 trillion while BDBL’s deposit is Tk 32 billion, which is nearly one fiftieth of the SB. The amount of loan is also the same. As a result, this (default loan) won’t affect Sonali Bank that much, he remarked.

Assuring the BDBL employees, Afzal Karim said, “BDBL employees do not need to panic. Though we have nearly 8,000 employees, we need more human resources. BDBL has around 600 employees. That is why they have nothing to be worried about.”