17 Mar 2009

PNG's BSP posts record profit

11:13 am on 17 March 2009

The Bank South Pacific posted a 115 million US dollar operating profit before tax last year, up 16 percent from the previous year on strong business condition in the country.

Net profit for the year ending Dec 31, 2008, was 80 million compared to 67 million posted in 2007.

The newspaper, the National reports the increase in the profit outcome accompanied sustained growth in the level of the bank's total assets, which grew 17 percent from last year.

The bank says massive liquidity growth in 2007 provided the momentum for very strong customer loan and receivables growth last year, with net loans and advances increasing by 51 percent.

The favourable economic conditions for most of last year supported high volumes of foreign exchange transactions.

But Noreo Beangke, the BSP board chairman, has warned that some stress is likely to show in certain sectors of the economy, not only mineral and petroleum exports but also in property, agriculture, and transport.

He says the 2008 results of the group reflected strong business conditions in the PNG economy for most of the year, but with conditions slowing in the closing months as the implications of the global financial crisis started to become clearer for PNG economy.