Banking credit grows 3.2pc during Jan – Apr 2020

Muscat: Total outstanding credit extended by conventional and Islamic banks in the Sultanate grew 3.2 per cent to RO 26.4 billion at the end of April 2020, the Central Bank of Oman (CBO) announced in its latest monthly review of banking and monetary developments.

Credit to the private sector rose by 2.7 per cent to RO 23 billion, the apex bank said. Of the total credit to the private sector, the non-financial corporate sector and the household sector (mainly under personal loans) received a share of 46.8 per cent and 44.5 per cent respectively, while the financial corporations received 5.4 per cent and other sectors the remaining 3.3 per cent.

Total deposits held with conventional and Islamic banks registered a growth of 3.6 per cent and stood at RO 23.9 billion at the end of April 2020. Private sector deposits increased by 10.5 per cent to RO 16.2 billion. Sector-wise, the share of households was largest at 49.7 per cent in the total private sector deposits, followed by non-financial corporations at 32 per cent, financial corporations at 16.1 per cent and the other sectors at 2.3 per cent.

“The combined balance sheet of conventional banks denotes an annual growth of 2.2 per cent in total outstanding credit as on end-April 2020. Conventional banks’ credit to the private sector increased by 1.1 per cent to RO 19.1 billion,” the report noted.

Conventional banks’ overall investments in securities amounted to RO 3.4 billion. Investment in Government Development Bonds increased by 17.2 per cent over the year to RO 1.7 billion. Banks also invested RO 102.3 million in Government Treasury Bills, while their investments in foreign securities stood at RO 978.6 million at the end of April 2020.

Aggregate deposits held with conventional banks increased to RO 20.4 billion in April 2020, registering a growth of 2.9 per cent over the level a year ago. Government deposits with conventional banks decreased by 15.3 per cent to RO 4.8 billion, while deposits of public enterprises increased by 19.1 percent to RO 1.3 billion.  Private sector deposits, which accounted for 66.5 per cent of total deposits with conventional banks, increased by 9.6 per cent to RO 13.9 billion.

Islamic banking entities provided financing of RO 4.1 billion at the end of April 2020, recording a growth of 8.9 per cent over that a year ago. Total deposits held with Islamic banks and windows increased by 7.7 percent to RO 3.5 billion. The total assets of Islamic Banks and Windows stood at RO 4.9 billion and constituted about 14 per cent of the banking system’s assets as on end-April2020.