28 Mar 2007

PNG's Bank South Pacific makes offer for National Bank of Solomon Islands

4:23 pm on 28 March 2007

The locally-owned National Bank of Solomon Islands is being sold to Bank South Pacific of Papua New Guinea.

The managing director of the National Bank, Peter Goodwin, says while they have successfully competed with the international banks like Westpac and the ANZ, it is time the bank spread its risk profile.

He says all four shareholders of the National Bank, which include the National Provident Fund and three trusts, have agreed to the sale.

Mr Goodwin would not reveal how much the bank is being sold for but he says the PNG offer is a good fit for the National Bank.

"Offers on the table, been accepted and currently just waiting for some paperwork to come out of Solomon Islands government to allow the transaction to proceed. Hopefully that will all be done and dusted by this Friday. Conditions precedent will then be met shortly afterwards and we hope that we're able to settle some time in April."

Mr Goodwin says the NPF and the three trusts will take shareholdings in Bank South Pacific.