Troubled Tajik bank Agroinvestbank begins asset sales as it struggles to recapitalise

Troubled Tajik bank Agroinvestbank begins asset sales as it struggles to recapitalise
By bne IntelliNews December 5, 2017

Tajikistan’s troubled Agroinvestbank announced last week its intention to start selling off assets as its funds are insufficient for returning depositors’ money. The bank aims to sell 17 vehicles and 550 units of computer and cash register equipment to interested individuals, companies and credit institutions.

Tajik banks have been hit hard by the country’s economic problems, much of them linked to declining exports to, and remittances from, Russia. The situation has left many Tajik businesses and individuals unable to repay their loans to banks and microfinance institutions. The rise in non-performing loans has subsequently eroded the banks' capital buffers. The Tajik banks’ aggregate average capital adequacy ratio (CAR) has consistently fallen, declining from 25.9% in 2012 to 11.1% in 2015.

Earlier in 2017, authorities attempted to rescue distressed banks with capital injections to avert a potential liquidity crisis. But the move appears to have been insufficient. Agroinvestbank, along with largest Tajik bank TSB, have been given injections of TJS1.7bn (€162mn) and TJS2.25bn, respectively, but they are still experiencing difficulties.

As of October 1, Agroinvestbank's assets amounted to TJS1.835bn, its capital stood at TJS157mn, while its credit and deposit portfolios totalled TJS1.171bn and TJS1.148bn, respectively.

The bank’s obligations to its depositors have declined from TJS2.4mn to TJS1.6mn, since the beginning of the year. The bank has also had to cut 75% of its personnel, or 1,520 employees, across this year.

The Dushanbe Economic Court launched liquidation processes for Tajprombank and Fononbank in March, following the Tajik central bank’s announcement in February that it was pulling the two banks’ licences. The banks were originally supposed to receive TJS530mn for recapitalisation.

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