At HDBank's annual general shareholders' meeting, the lender affirmed its steadfast commitment to actively engage in the Credit Institutions Restructuring Programme, while expanding its investment portfolio. Meanwhile, the question of whether the bank's foreign ownership cap of 49 per cent will be lifted remains unclear.
|HDBank's 2023 AGM |
HDBank held its AGM on April 26 where it pledged to continue its participation in the Credit Institutions Restructuring Program, in compliance with the State Bank of Vietnam's (SBV) resolution on restructuring the credit system.
Related to this, the Board of Directors presented and authorised the completion of HDBank's acquisition of a weak Vietnamese bank, in accordance with legal regulations and guidance from the necessary state agencies.
In addition to this acquisition, HDBank is expected to seek shareholder approval for the purchase of a securities company, in anticipation of the immense growth potential of the Vietnamese stock market.
However, whether HDBank will be able to increase its foreign ownership limit (FOL) to 49 per cent remains unclear.
According to Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao, standing vice chairwoman of the Board of Directors at HDBank, "There are provisions set by the government and the SBV to enable credit institutions to acquire weak banks and lift FOL to 49 per cent, but there are still many undisclosed details. Therefore, the bank is unable to confirm the move at present and will inform its shareholders at an appropriate time."
Speaking about the bank's investment bond activities, Pham Quoc Thanh, CEO, shared that the bank has allocated approximately 8 per cent of its financing to the lowest-rated real estate projects, mostly in the low-income housing sector.
The bank has successfully sponsored five social housing projects, demonstrating its risk appetite to be in line with sustainable development objectives.
Thao further stated that even during the recent volatility, HDBank's customers have always paid on time and bonds have not been discounted below par. With 14 million customers, HDBank's trust index and continued usage commitment stand at over 99 per cent, reflecting the bank's robust reputation.
|Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao, standing vice chairwoman of the Board of Directors at HDBank |
In response to an inquiry pertaining to the current status of the non-performing loan (NPL) coverage ratio and asset quality of HDBank, Thanh asserted, “The bank maintains effective control over the quality of its loan portfolio, with a well-distributed risk profile, and a NPL provisioning ratio of 70-75 per cent, which is deemed reasonable. As conditions permit, the bank will increase its bad debt provisioning rate."
"HDBank's risk appetite is quite conservative, and all loans are secured with high-quality collateral. As a result, the bank's bad debt coverage ratio is impressive compared to the rest of the industry," Thao added. "This is further evidenced by the bank's continuous bad debt ratio of below 1 per cent for many years."
HDBank plans to launch new services in the strategic, high-end market segment in May to focus on servicing this customer group with the utmost care and efficiency, which it had previously not been able to do.
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