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January 13, 2009

Vietinbank says 2008 credit growth was 18.2 pct
Vietinbank, Vietnam's third largest bank, said on Tuesday its credit growth last year was 18.2 percent, lower than the growth in lending in the banking system as a whole, which was 21-22 percent.

Reuters quoted the Hanoi-based bank, which launched an initial public offering last month, as saying its total outstanding loans now stood at 120 trillion dong ($6.9 billion), of which only 1.09 percent was classified as bad debt.

It sold a 4 percent stake, raising $64 million, in the IPO and said in its annual report that it planned to list its shares on the Ho Chi Minh Stock Exchange .VNI this year.

It said $900 million, more than 11 percent of the country's total remittances from Vietnamese working overseas, went through the bank.

It also said it had 174.6 trillion dong in deposits at the end of last year, up 17 percent from the end of 2007.

Vietinbank, or Vietnam Bank for Industry and Trade, three other state-run commercial banks and Vietcombank, the country's largest partly private lender, command more than 70 percent of lending in Vietnam.

Vietinbank forecast in December that its net profit would nearly double in 2009 to 2.2 trillion dong and its total assets would grow 25.6 percent to 263.48 trillion.

Vietinbank has forecast that its net profit for 2008 would rise 7.8 percent to 1.24 trillion dong.

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