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Sultanate’s bank credit rises 3 per cent in March, deposits up 2.5 per cent: CBO

16 May 2021

Total outstanding credit extended by Oman’s banking sector grew by 3 per cent year-on-year to reach at RO27.2bn at the end of March 2021, the latest statistics released by the Central Bank of Oman (CBO) showed.

However, bank credit to the sultanate’s private sector demonstrated a relatively moderate growth of 0.9 per cent year-on-year to reach at RO23.3bn as of March 31, 2021, the CBO said in its monthly statistical bulletin.

The shares of non-financial corporate sector and household sector (mainly under personal loans) in total private sector credit stood at 46.8 per cent and 45 per cent, respectively. The share of financial corporations was 4.9 per cent and other sectors received the remaining 3.3 per cent of total private sector credit. The combined balance sheet of the conventional banks showed a year-on-year growth of just 1.5 per cent in total outstanding credit as of end-March 2021. 

The conventional banks’ credit to the private sector declined by 0.7 per cent to RO19.1bn, while their overall investments in securities went up by 24.9 per cent to RO4.6bn. The conventional banks’ investment in government development bonds increased by 5.3 per cent to RO1.8bn, while their investments in foreign securities declined by 13.9 per cent to RO0.96bn at the end of March 2021.

On the other hand, Islamic banking entities provided total financing of RO4.5bn at the end of March 2021, recording a growth of 11 per cent over that a year ago.

The data issued by the central bank indicated that total deposits held with the banking sector registered a year-on-year growth of 2.5 per cent at RO24.7bn at the end of March 2021. Total private sector deposits increased by 7.3 per cent to RO17.1bn.

In terms of sector-wise composition of private sector deposits, the share of household deposits stood at 51 per cent, followed by non-financial corporations at 32.7 per cent, financial corporations at 13.9 per cent and other sectors at 2.4 per cent.

Aggregate deposits held with Oman’s conventional banks increased by 0.8 per cent year-on-year to RO20.7bn at end-March 2021. The government deposits with conventional banks witnessed a decrease of 10.5 per cent at RO4.4bn, likewise, deposits from public enterprises declined by 19.7 per cent to RO1.2bn. Private sector deposits, which accounted for 70.4 per cent of total deposits with conventional banks, increased by 6.7 per cent as of March 2021 to reach RO14.6bn.

Total deposits held with Islamic banks and Islamic banking windows, by contrast, increased by 12.7 per cent to RO3.9bn. Total assets of Islamic banks and windows increased by 12.2 per cent on year-on-year basis to RO5.4bn and constituted about 14.7 per cent of the banking system’s assets at the end of March 2021.

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