7th rural bank ordered closed

Lawrence Agcaoili (The Philippine Star) - August 6, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) has stepped up its campaign to weed the banking industry of weak players with the closure of another rural bank, bringing to seven the number or problematic banks ordered closed so far this year.

With still five months left in 2018, the number of closed problematic banks already matched 2017’s full year tally.

The BSP’s Monetary Board has prohibited Rural Bank of Sta. Elena (Camarines Norte) Inc. from doing business in the country. The closed bank was also placed under the supervision of the state-run Philippine Deposit Insurance Corp. (PDIC).

The Rural Bank of Sta. Elena is a single-unit rural bank located in Barangay Sta. Elena (Pob.), Sta. Elena, Camarines Norte.

Latest available records showed the closed rural bank had 744 deposit accounts with total deposit liabilities of P19.6 million. Of the total amount, about 84.2 percent or P16.5 million were insured.

At the start of the month, the BSP also closed down Batangas-based Tiaong Rural Bank Inc., an eight-unit rural bank with head office located in Santo Tomas, Batangas.

It has branches in Batangas City and Lipa City in Batangas; Imus, Cavite; Calamba, San Pablo City and Sta. Rosa City in Laguna; and in Tiaong, Quezon.

Aside from Rural Bank of Sta. Elena and Tiaong Rural Bank, other banks shuttered include Iloilo-based Bangko Buena Consolidated Inc., Batangas-based Women’s Rural Bank Inc., Rural Bank of Initao (Misamis Oriental) Inc., Empire Rural Bank Inc. in Lipa City, Batangas as well as the Rural Bank of Loreto (Surigao del Norte) Inc.

The government would continues to provide incentives under the Consolidation Program for Rural Banks to encourage mergers and consolidations among small banks, particularly rural banks, to further strengthen and enhance the viability of the banking system.

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