May 01, 2010, JAFFNA, Sri Lanka (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s finance companies are expanding with confidence returning to the sector following a panic 2009, though regulators are working on a handful of troubled firms, Central Bank Governor Nivard Cabraal said. Sri Lanka’s Bartleets Financial Services and Central Investments and Finance Limited (CIFL) opened branches in the former war-torn Jaffna peninsular Friday.
“We are not here to just get deposits,” Bartleets group chairman Eraj Wijesinghe told customers and officials after Governor Cabraal opened the branch.
“We want to give loans, and help build up your assets and businesses so that you can create wealth.”
Sri Lanka’s 30-year war ended in May 2009 and the northern Jaffna peninsular and after a road link to the South of the island was opened for civilian traffic there has been a revival in economic activity.
Licensed commercial banks were the first to open branches. In 2009 banking panic only one commercial bank, Seylan Bank connected to Sri Lanka’s Ceylinco group was hit by a run and was taken over by the regulator.
This was after several unregulated finance firms in the group collapsed and several regulated finance companies also were hit by runs. F