GCB Bank holds 2013 AGM [Ghana News Agency]
(Ghana News Agency Via Acquire Media NewsEdge)
Accra, May 23, GNA - Dr Fritz Augustine Gockel, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the GCB Bank Limited on Friday said despite the challenging economic environment, the bank has continued to record robust growths.
He said the bank has also sustained its performance among the top ranks of the banking industry in Ghana and delivered attractive returns by paying respectable dividend to its shareholders, achieved key targets set for the year 2013 and even exceeded most of them.
According to him, Capital of the Bank went up by 70 per cent, from GH¢227 million in 2012 to GH¢387 million in 2013, while Profit Before Tax increased by 64 per cent which was GH¢ 317.1 million compared to GH¢192.9 million in 2012.
The Total Income of the Bank also appreciated by 36 per cent from GH¢418.1million in 2012 to 568.2 million in 2013, with its Total Assets raising by 14 per cent to GH¢3,405 million in 2013 compared to GH¢2,981 million in 2012.
Mr Gockel further said the Bank's Total Shareholders' Equity rose from GH¢296 million in 2012 to GH¢466 million in 2013, registering a 58 per cent increase and grew its Earning per Share to 0.86 Ghana pesewas, which represents 59 per cent compared to 0.54 Ghana pesewas realised in 2012.
The Bank consequently proposed a total cash dividend of GH¢ 66.25 million for 2013, compared to GH¢37.1 million in 2012, and this represents a cash dividend per share of 0.25 pesewas in 2013 as against 0.14 in 2012, and a growth of 78.6 per cent over that of 2012.
Dr Gockel was addressing the 20th Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Bank for 2013 in which the Banks Annual Reports and Financial Statements were presented to shareholders for approval and adoption.
He said notwithstanding these achievements, there were a host of challenges that confronted the banking industry at both the local and global levels in the year under review
He said inflation remained tamed worldwide, partly reflecting output gaps, high unemployment and a continued financial deleveraging in major developed economies.
He also indicated that provisional estimates show that domestic economic performance, as measured by growth in Gross Domestic Product was estimated at 7.4 per cent for 2013, down from 7.9 per cent recorded in 2012.
The declaration in growth was attributed largely to the decline in the services sector, which grew at a rate of 9.2 per cent in 2013, compared to the 10.2 per cent recorded in 2012.
Again the Industry and Agricultural sectors grew at higher rates in 2013.
Dr Gockel further cited government Fiscal operations which showed an overall budget deficit of GH¢10.1 billion representing 10.8 per cent of the GDP in 2013 which was financed mainly from the domestic sector as some of the challenges.
He said inflation, which was in single digits in 2012 accelerated in 2013 on account of the fiscal slippages, exacerbated by structural policies such as fuel and utility price increases.
"From 10.1per cent in January 2013, the general price index recorded an end of year increase of 13.5 per cent", he said.
The Ghana Cedi started the year at GH¢1.889 to the United States Dollar and closed at the rate of GH¢2.1616 to the dollar representing a 12.6 per cent rate of depreciation over the period.
He said consequently, monitory policies responses raised the Policy Rates by one percentage point to 16 per cent in 2013, which was maintained throughout the year.
He said the use of part of the one billion EURO Bond proceeds to finance some maturing debts also aided the moderation of interest rate levels such that interest rates on market instruments declined, while the 91-day Treasury bill rate declined from a high of 23.1 per cent to 19.2 per cent.
He however said in furtherance of the banks Corporate Social Responsibility on touching lives and ensuring better living conditions for people and communities, it invested over half a million Ghana Cedis in supporting various activities including the construction of classroom blocks for deprived communities.
It also made some donations to the National Cardiothoracic Centre and the Medical Block of the Korle-Bu Teaching hospital.
Shareholders after deliberating on the Annual Report and Financial Statement voted in approval and also accepted proposals for the re-election of Directors, as well as approved increases in the remuneration of the Directors and Auditors of the Bank.
(c) 2014 Ghana News Agency (GNA) Provided by SyndiGate Media Inc. (Syndigate.info).
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