Bankers’ Cry

Sri Lanka's Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe arrives with flowers to receive blessings at the Gangaramaya Buddhist Temple, Colombo, Sri Lanka on Wednesday 4 April 2018. On wednesday (4), Wickremesinghe survived a no-confidence motion in the Sri Lankan parliament with a 46 vote majority after a 12-hour debate with 122 MPs voted in his support while 76 MPs voting to remove the prime minister. (Photo by Tharaka Basnayaka/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Sri Lanka’s banks are asking authorities to revive stalled plans to strengthen the Credit Information Bureau (CRIB), while the sector is also facing the prospect of a relaxation of debt recovery laws.

Analysts say relaxing debt recovery laws, and making it easier for defaulters to escape notice, may push up Sri Lanka’s national non-performing loan ratio which is over 11 percent at the moment.

The Credit Information Bureau itself was set up after a large number of finance companies collapsed in the nineteen eighties.

The amendments would allow the CRIB to track subscribers of utilities such as telephone operators.

The changes to the law governing the CRIB have been suddenly suspended allegedly due to pressure from defaulters, who have strong political connections.

The Sri Lanka Bankers’ Association is now asking the authorities to proceed with the proposed changes.

A complaint has been made to the highest levels of the government that ˜because of this something called crib, we can’t take any loans’, says Upali de Silva, Secretary General of the Sri Lanka Banks’ Association.

So, without any further inquiry, instructions have been issued to put o