The Agricultural Industrial and Development (AID) Bank is being plagued by the non-payment of loans, prompting Deputy Prime Minister Reginald Austrie to appeal to clients to meet their obligations to the institution.
Speaking at the annual general meeting of the bank this week, he said reports show that delinquency has climbed to about 50 percent in the last financial year.
“It is with dismay, however, that your report shows an increase in non-performing loans of somewhere in the region of 50 percent during the fiscal year 2106-2017,” he said.
According to Austrie, the industrial sector took the largest chunk of non-performing loans at 42.5 percent, followed by tourism at 35.1 percent.
“Of equal concern is that the portfolio at risk ratio now stands at 38 percent up from 34.3 percent at the end of the previous year,” he stated.
He said it appears clients are not taking their obligations seriously.
“I am sure that clients can advance many reasons why they did not meet the obligations and these reasons may well be valid,” he noted. “The truth is that too many of us do not attach high priority to such payments.”
He said many borrowers don’t take their obligations seriously, “some may go as far as to suggest that the bank is owned by the state, so why should we pay.”