Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Thailand Doubles 2009 Target For Loans By State-Owned Banks

BANGKOK -(Dow Jones)- The Thai government is doubling its target for loans extended by state-owned banks this year to THB1.25 trillion ($36.8 billion), Deputy Prime Minister Korbsak Sabhavasu said Tuesday.

The government has seen signs of economic recovery and rising demand for loans, Korbsak told reporters, adding that higher borrowings would be a catalyst driving domestic economic growth.

"The new target should be achievable, driven by higher loan demand," said Korbsak.

In the first six months of this year, lending by state-owned banks excluding Krung Thai Bank PCL (KTB.TH) totaled THB420 billion.

The lending target by Krung Thai Bank has been revised up by THB50 billion to THB350 billion, while other state-owned banks will extend the remainder.

State-owned banks include Krung Thai Bank, Bank for Agriculture and Agricultural Cooperatives, Government Housing Bank, Government Savings Bank and the SME Bank. They are the government's vehicles for boosting lending and spurring domestic demand.

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