Rwanda’s Biggest Bank Forecasts 10% Profit Drop on Virus Fallout
BK Group Plc expects net income to decline more than 10% this year as the fallout from measures to curb the coronavirus knock the operations of Rwanda’s largest bank.
All of its divisions will probably be hit, although the group will still remain profitable, Chief Executive Officer Diane Karusisi said by phone from the capital, Kigali.
While the lender is in a strong capital position, BK Group is in talks with development finance institutions such as African Development Bank and African Export-Import Bank on potential credit lines that can be drawn down only if the situation worsens, she said. BK Group’s priorities will focus on weathering the crisis, supporting customers and the increased digitalization of its services and operations, Karusisi said.
Rwanda’s central bank last month lowered interest rates for the first time in about a year and eased cash reserve requirements for banks to stimulate economic growth the government forecasts will slow to 3.5% this year from an earlier projection of over 10%. Banks have already started restructuring loans for clients to cope with lockdowns that have slowed output.
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