By Lee C. Chipongian
Government-owned Land Bank of the Philippines (LandBank) reported a 12 percent year-on-year increase in net income in the first quarter to P4.75 billion, its president and CEO, Cecilia C. Borromeo said.
Borromeo said the bank’s strong first quarter performance as seen in its loan growth, ensures its profitability and supports its goal of releasing more loans to their mandated sectors – farmers and fisherfolk.
Its latest income number is actually 14 percent higher from its income target for the period of P4.16 billion. “We work hard to maintain the bank’s sound financial position as the profits from our commercial banking operations allow us to move toward our bigger mission of promoting inclusive growth, especially in areas where financial services are not easily available or accessible,” said Borromeo.
She also said that LandBank is in a “good position to further drive support for its priority sectors, especially to farmers and fishers, microenterprises and SMEs, agribusiness and other development players.”
In a statement, LandBank said its return on equity and net interest margin are above industry averages, at 13.04 percent and 3.42 percent as of end-March, respectively.
Borromeo said its income remained robust because of the growth in the bank’s loans and investments. As of end-March, its interest income on loans went up by 69 percent with a gross loan portfolio of P867.32 billion.
LandBank’s income from investments in financial assets amounted to P6.36 billion, up 43 percent year-on-year.
At the end of the first quarter, the government bank had P1.89 trillion in assets, P1.68 trillion in deposits and P136.47 billion-worth of capital – all are higher year-on-year by 16 percent, 17 percent and 26 percent, respectively.
LandBank expects to have 410 branches by the end of 2019. Currently it operates 400 branches nationwide, plus 61 branch lites, and 44 lending centers.