LONDON, (The Southern African Times) – Amidst the global pandemic and lockdowns, the Agriculture Development Bank (GSE:ADB) was more profitable in its operations; posting a profit after tax of GH¢65.4 million compared to GH¢14.9 million in 2019.
This represents over 400%, year on year, growth in performance in 2020, occasioning a return on equity and return on assets of 7.69% and 1.14% as against 1.87% and 0.32% respectively, in 2019.
According to the bank’s report to shareholders at the 34th Annual General Meeting, the size of its balance sheet experienced a significant growth over the year from GH¢4.6 billion in 2019 to GH¢5.7billion in 2020 (24%). “This was bolstered in part by our improved holdings in investment securities in line with our strategic objectives,” the Bank said.
During the reporting period, the bank saw an expansion of 30% in net loan assets from GH¢1.5 billion in 2019 to GH¢1.9 billion in 2019. The Non-Performing Loan portfolio of the bank witnessed significant reduction from 41% in 2019 to 34% in 2020.
Nonetheless, the bank is targeting to bring the NPL ratio within industry brackets by 2023. Deposits grew by 26% from GH¢3.4 billion in 2019 to GH¢4.2 billion in 2020.
In line with its strategic objective to increase the agricultural loan portfolio to 50% of the bank’s total loan portfolio, the bank in 2020 deepened its financial intermediation to players in the agricultural value chain.
The bank last year collaborated with the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA) and the Ghana Incentive-Based Risk-Sharing System for Agricultural Lending Project (GIRSAL) to finance rice and soya millers to buy stock off farmers and process for sale in the local market.
The bank approved an amount of GH¢70 million as working capital to the National Food Buffer Stock Company Ltd (NAFCO) to buy off excess produce for storage as buffer stock, under the Planting for Food and Jobs.
Furthermore, the bank remained an active partner for the implementation of the novel One District One Factory Programme (1D1F). It approved total loans of about GH¢104 million in favour of some 17 viable projects to undertake among others broiler production and processing, fruit processing, general manufacturing, construction, jute bags production as well as fish farming and processing.
The bank also launched the broiler revitalization programme dubbed ADB Broiler Value Chain Programme. The initiative aimed to invest a total of GH¢500million of soft loans in businesses in the broiler value chain.