FOR the half-year that ended March 31, 2021, Republic Bank Guyana has recorded an after-tax profit of $1,712 million. According to the institution’s audited financial statements published on Sunday, the recorded profit represents a decrease of $248 million. This translates to a 12.7 per cent dip when compared to the corresponding period last year.
This, the Bank recognised, is as “a result of reductions in net interest and other income (due to reduced levels of economic activity and the non-recurrence of certain one-off events along with an increase in our provisions for loan loss.” Further, the bank said that its total assets grew by $36.4 billion or 19.7 per cent. As it relates to customers’ deposits, this saw an increase of $31.8 billion, or 20.1 per cent year-on-year. “On the basis of this performance, your directors have approved an interim dividend of $1.00 per stock unit (2020: $1.00),” the bank informed its stakeholders.
At the end of September last year, its parent company, Republic Financial Holdings Limited (RFHL) recorded a 42.8 per cent decrease in revenues, when compared to the same period in 2019.
In a press release issued then, Chairman of the company, Vincent Pereira had attributed the declines to the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic and related challenges that it brought on. “…. decreased economic activity, lower margins due to reduced interest rates; waiver of fees and commissions under the COVID-19 relief initiatives; increased provisioning to cover potential future losses on the loan and investments portfolios, and impairment of the remaining Goodwill held in our Barbados subsidiary,” Pereira was quoted as saying.
As at September 30, 2020, Pereira said that the company’s total assets stood at US$15.57 billion, which represented an increase of US$2.51 billion or 19.2 per cent from the previous year.
This increase, it was explained, was owing to the acquisition of Scotiabank’s banking operations in St. Maarten and the Eastern Caribbean – Anguilla, Dominica, Grenada, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, and St. Vincent and the Grenadines. Republic Bank Guyana had also attempted to acquire Scotiabank’s Guyana shares as well, but was blocked, following Government’s intervention. In early 2020, Dr. Gobind Ganga, Governor of the Bank of Guyana, informed that Scotiabank would no longer be selling its operations.
Nonetheless, Pereira had said in 2020 that “While there continues to be uncertainty over the future direction and duration of the COVID-19 pandemic, we are confident that the Group’s strong capital base, diverse geographic footprint and robust governance culture leave it well-positioned to support the recovery efforts of the economies within which we operate.”
He further assured of the bank’s commitment towards responding to the needs of its customers and clients, while providing safe working conditions for its employees.