August 8, 2018 / 9:00 AM / 2 years ago

Uganda's Stanbic Bank pre-tax profit rises, sees credit growth

KAMPALA, Aug 8 (Reuters) - Stanbic Bank Uganda, owned by South Africa’s Standard Bank Group, said on Wednesday its half-year profit before tax rose 4 percent, compared to the first six months of 2017, helped by higher non-interest income.

Uganda’s largest financial institution by assets said in results published in local newspapers that it earned 133 billion shillings ($36 million) compared to 128.5 billion for the first half last year.

“The slight uptick in profit is largely attributed to growth in non-interest revenues supported by growth in customer transactions,” it said.

Earnings from fees and commissions were up at 71.7 billion shillings, from 66.4 billion.

Patrick Mweheire, the bank’s chief executive, said in comments published with the results that there was a rebound in private sector credit flow “after some anaemic growth the last couple of years.”

“We’re finally seeing growth ... I am very optimistic.”

Credit uptake was rebounding for a range of sectors including agriculture, manufacturing and service.

Uganda’s central bank slashed its policy rate to 9 percent in February, the lowest since policymakers begun using inflation-targeting monetary policy in 2011.

Authorities are keen to accelerate faster credit flow and revive economic growth which has hovered around 4 percent in recent years, compared to what the central bank says is potential growth of 7 percent. ($1 = 3,680.0000 Ugandan shillings) (Reporting by Elias Biryabarema; Editing by George Obulutsa and Alexander Smith)

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