Lower Pra Rural Bank continues to grow bigger and better, as it posted a positive picture in the financial year.
Deposits rose from GH¢96,822,527 in 2019 to GH¢129,686,553 in 2020, showing an increase of 34%.
Total assets increased by 32% from GH¢110,688,021 in 2019 to GH¢145,582,886 in 2020. The growth in total assets conforms to the bank’s sustainable growth rate policy.
Also, the bank’s earnings depend primarily on its net interest income on advances and investment in securities. The total income recorded was GH¢34,062,343 as against total expenditure of GH¢32,301,878 and resulted in a profit after tax of GH¢1,704,183 – a fall of 15% from the previous year.
At the 33rd Annual General Meeting, Isaac Kwamina Van-Ess – Board Chairman of Lower Pra Bank PLC, pointed out that the bank offered advances to numerous customers in the form of sundry loans, group loans, loans to salaried workers, overdrafts, consumer goods as well as vehicle and building loans.
“The advances outstanding under our lending programmes in 2019 totalled GH¢¢56.1m as against GH¢59.4m in 2020, representing an increase of 6%. The previous year saw an increase of 23.84%, and the COVID-19 pandemic slowed down business activities and caused customers to shy away from loans,” he added.
He urged defaulters of loans to repay as soon as possible for other customers to benefit. “Drastic measures will be considered if the situation persists.”
On community development, he mentioned that contributions amounting to GH¢400,918 were made in 2020 to support developmental activities of the catchment area in the fields of education, health, community-initiated projects and some miscellaneous activities.
He explained that the bank’s scholarship covers secondary and vocational schools as well as the tertiary level, and since its inception in the early 2000s a total amount of GH¢2,190,500 has been disbursed.
Mr. Van-Ess, commenting on outlook, mentioned that experts are saying there is a sign that the economy is on a rebound.
He commended management, staff, shareholders and stakeholders for their contribution toward the bank’s growth and the successes it has achieved over the years.
Mr. Kojo Mattah, Managing Director of ARB APEX Bank Limited, in an address read for him said Apex Bank has carefully studied the emerging trends and therefore decided to put in place the right measures to be able to deliver better services for their esteemed customers.
“Our major development is the introduction of Mobile banking for all Rural and Community Banks’ (RCBs) customers. This means with a mobile phone number, every customer can now have his/her account linked to it and enable them to move money from their wallets to their account numbers with the RCBs,” he added.
He encouraged all RCBs to sign their customers onto this important service to enable them enjoy the freedom of banking from the convenience of their phone.
“Congratulations to shareholders, board, management and staff of the bank for their supports over the years,” he said.