EghtesadOnline: The Iranian banking system paid out 2.7 quadrillion rials ($67.6 billion) worth of loans to more than four million applicants during the first half of the current Iranian year (March 21-Sept. 22), marking a 16.1% growth compared with the same period of last year.
According to the latest report by the Central Bank of Iran, which indicates the details of loans allocated to various economic sectors, the services sector grabbed the lion’s share of the bank loans both in terms of number and volume.
More than 2.3 million applicants in the sector received loans worth more than 1.08 quadrillion rials ($27.1 billion) during the first six months of the Iranian year, accounting for 40.21% of all the offered credits.
The industries and mining sector with loans amounting to 825.6 trillion rials ($20.64 billion) and the business sector pocketing 379.83 trillion rials ($9.5 billion) were the next major recipients of credits accounting for 30.53% and 14.4% of the total loans, respectively.
After the services sector, according to Financial Tribune, the agriculture and housing sectors with 710,316 and 450,849 loan recipients took home the largest number of allocated credits.
The housing sector, which started recovering from its long-lasting recession, only bagged 199.5 trillion rials ($4.98 billion) or 7.37% of the total amount of loans, which is insignificant considering the size and value of the key sector.
As noted by CBI, care should be taken to ensure the growth in banks’ loan portfolios does not raise inflationary pressure, since demand for credit is particularly high. Thus, recapitalization of banks, improvement of efficiency in allocating working capital loans to productive activities, reduction of bad debt and navigation of firms to the capital market are recommended.
As the report indicates, the share of working capital loans for all economic sectors in the period stood at 1.72 quadrillion rials ($43 billion), which account for 63.78% of all loans during the period.
The share of working capital loans to stimulate industries and mines was 691.73 trillion rials ($17.3 billion), which is equivalent to 40.13% of all the credits extended to meet the working capital needs of businesses.
Industries and mines received 83.8% of their credits as working capital while they garnered a significant share of all loans offered by the banking system to business sectors.
The services sector was the runner-up, grabbing 553.2 trillion rials ($13.83 billion), or 32% of the entire working capital loans. More than half of its credit went to meet working capital needs.
An analysis of the report reveals that the average value of each loan that went to the industrial and mining sectors was considerably higher than that extended to other sectors, which reached 6.23 billion rials ($155,750).
The average figure for business loans, which had the second highest average value, was about 878 million rials ($21,950) while loans allocated to agriculture sector had the lowest average value at 295 million rials ($7,375) during the first six months of the current Iranian year.