STATE-RUN run mass market lender, People's Own Savings Bank (POSB) said yesterday strong performance projected in Zimbabwe’s mining and agricultural sectors this year will bolster economic growth, as it threw caution over the implications of geopolitical tensions on the country.
In a commentary to financial results for the half year ended June 30, 2023, POSB acting chairperson Israel Ndlovu said his optimism had been reinforced by the roll out of a tighter monetary policy by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, which has been credited for current exchange rate, following a difficult first half.
“The People’s Own Savings Bank remains optimistic that economic growth will improve in the year 2023 on the back of a better agricultural season, increased mining output and improved services performance,” Ndlovu said, as financial results for the period showed inflation adjusted net profit rising to ZW$61,74 billion.
POSB’s net profit ended at ZW$1,46 billion during the comparable period in 2022. The growth was underpinned by foreign exchange gain totalling ZW$113,18 billion during the review period.
The POSB boss said net interest income doubled to ZW$13,88 billion during the period under review from a 2022 comparative of ZW$6,86 billion, a trending that was also reported by other financial institutions including Victoria Falls Stock Exchange-listed First Capital Bank.
POSB’s loans and advances were recorded at ZW$58,26 billion at the end of the period under review, up nearly 213% from ZW$18,63 billion registered at the end of 2022.
Non-interest income, fees and commission income rose by nearly 220% to ZW$36,73 billion during the period under review from a 2022 comparative of ZW$11,49 billion.
Total assets were up 155,13% to ZW$313,78 billion from a December 2022 comparative of ZW$122,98 billion.
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Ndlovu said the bank would also continue to introduce new and innovative products in line with its mandate of promoting financial inclusion.
“The board is optimistic that the performance of the bank will remain satisfactory in the second half of the year 2023 as the bank continues to grow its customer base and deposits, both in the Zimbabwean dollar (ZWL) and the United States dollar (USD),” Ndlovu said.
The Zimbabwe dollar traded at US$1:ZW$5 739,79 at the end of June and US$1:ZW$370,96 at June 30 2022.