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Monday March 19, 2012

Higher growth expected for corporate loans

KUALA LUMPUR: Corporate loans are expected to buoy the local lending scene for banks and offset the expected slowdown in household loans this year.

Loans are still expected to grow at a healthy pace in spite of the anticipated slowdown in lending in the consumer segment due in part to the responsible lending guidelines.

Malayan Banking Bhd (Maybank) president and CEO Datuk Seri Abdul Wahid Omar told StarBiz in an e-mail that he expected loan growth in the corporate segment to be stronger in 2012 compared with last year because of the various infrastructure financing opportunities arising from the Government's Economic Transformation Programme (ETP).

“Our loan portfolio is quite balanced between consumer, corporate and the SMEs (small and medium enterprises) and we are expecting continued growth in all these segments. We have not seen any significant slowdown in the consumer segment yet, but we are prepared for a slightly slower growth rate compared with last year,” Abdul Wahid said.

“Overall, on the assumption that the economy would continue to grow, Maybank is targeting our domestic loan growth for financial year 2012 to be 13.6%.

“Our loan portfolio is quite balanced between the consumer, corporate and SMEs and we are expecting continued growth in all these segments,” he added.

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