Viet Nam News
HCM CITY — With demand for cash surging ahead of Tết next week, banks in HCM City are finding it hard to keep their automated teller machines well stocked.
Early this week, many ATM users and card holders complained they could not withdraw cash from ATMs and had to go to bank branches instead.
According to the State Bank of Việt Nam, the demand for cash at ATMs is rising, especially in urban areas, industrial parks and export processing zones (EPZs).
Last week, Nguyễn Duy, a resident of District 12, was unable to draw cash from ATMs near his home on two occasions.
At an ATM of the Việt Nam Export Import Commercial Joint Stock Bank (Eximbank) on Nguyễn Ánh Thủ Street, he could withdraw only VNĐ1.25 million (US$54). He finally had to go to a branch of Eximbank to get money.
An ATM on Lê Văn Việt Street in Thủ Đức District attracts large numbers of people, but each can draw a mere VNĐ800,000.
If a card holder seeks to withdraw a large sum at an ATM which is nearly out of cash, the system automatically notifies a cash limit.
Minh, who works for Huê Phong Leather Shoes Company in Gò Vấp District, said two ATMs placed at her company’s entrance have run out of cash.
Many people also have to queue up at the five Vietcombank (Joint Stock Commercial Bank for Foreign Trade of Việt Nam) ATMs at the Tân Bình Industrial Park.
ATMs at Tân Thuận EPZ in District 7 have been very busy during the past two weeks. Most people with bank cards here are workers who draw cash after their shift ends. Eximbank’s Tân Thuận branch has to constantly replenish 62 ATMs at the EPZ.
Banks have instructed their designated staff to keep replenishing their ATMs to ensure they meet the demand for cash until the 7th of the Lunar New Year (February 12).
A spokesman for Sacombank said the bank has 1,072 ATMs and their cash safety rate (of VNĐ200 million) is ensured with at least two inspections daily.
Võ Văn Tuần, deputy head of the State Bank of Việt Nam’s banking inspection and supervision, said the central bank has instructed credit agencies to ensure that their ATMs work normally through the Tết holidays.
If any ATM is out of money for 24 hours, the bank that owns it would be penalised, he said.
Banks must operate mobile ATMs in areas where there is large demand for cash during Tết, he added. — VNS.