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VietNamNews

Not a good time, say banks as central bank urges listing

Update: March, 21/2015 - 10:15
Transactions are carried out at HDBank. HDBank is among a few banks that have planned to list shares on the HCM City Stock Exchange for several years. — File Photo
HA NOI (VNS)  — Although the State Bank of Viet Nam (SBV) has been pushing joint stock banks to list on exchanges, the progress has remained slow.

This is because many banks expressed the view that it was not a good time for them to list due to the ongoing restructuring of the banking sector.

The Government has developed a roadmap for all commercial banks that must be listed on stock exchanges by the end of this year, with the aim of enhancing their operational transparency and reduce cross-share holdings.

Accordingly, 25 commercial banks have to be listed this year out of nearly 1,000 public companies.

During the latest effort related to this project, SBV Governor Nguyen Van Binh had issued a directive at the end of January in a bid to push the listing process of commercial banks on exchanges.

Binh had ordered the central bank's provincial branches to push commercial banks to realise their listing plan and closely monitor their progress.

This is not the first time that such an effort had been made. At the end of 2013, the State Securities Commission and SBV had pressed public banks to get listed in order to improve management and reduce cross-share holdings. In July 2014, the policy was re-emphasised with the target that all commercial banks must be listed in 2015.

Although many banks have already formulated listing plans, the plans are still existent only on paper as banks feel it is not to their advantage to list at the moment. Also, banks are seeking to enhance financial capacity before listing their shares on exchanges, in order to attract investors' attention or prioritise other plans during the restructuring process rather than the listing.

The Southern Bank, NamA Bank, HD Bank were among the banks, which had planned to list on the HCM City Stock Exchange several years ago.

HD Bank said it would list when the stock market saw better recovery, the Dau Tu Chung Khoan (Securities Investment) magazine reported, adding that the bank was seeking foreign capital before listing.

Meanwhile, the Nam A Bank has also stepped up the progress of its plan to list on the exchange within this year.

Dong A Bank had delayed its listing plan four years ago as the market was on a decline, saying at the time that the bank would list when the market was stronger so that it could prevent losses for its stakeholders.

Currently, there are eight banks listed on exchanges, including Vietcombank (VCB), Vietinbank (CTG), Eximbank (EIB), Sacombank (STB), A Chau Bank (ACB), Military Bank (MBB), Citizen Bank (NVB), Sai Gon Ha Noi (SHB) and BIDV (BID), which have a combined market capitalisation of VND134 trillion ($6.3 billion).

If all commercial banks were listed, their total share value was estimated to reach VND150 trillion ($7 billion). — VNS

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