People Power

March, 06 (LBO) – People’s Bank, a state bank has reported consolidated after tax profits of 3,997 billion rupees for, up 28 percent over the previous year, while the bank’s stand alone profits grew 20 percent to 3,350 million rupees, in its 2006 provisional results. The bank’s revenues grew 28.5 percent to 34.95 billion while group revenues with its leasing subsidiary were up 29.5 percent to 38.09 billion rupees.

Peoples’ Bank has been making steady progress under a restructuring drive that started in 2001 which saw the bank slashing non-performing loans and turning losses into profits.

Pension Threat

Analysts say all state banks are now again threatened by trade unions who are demanding that in addition to Employees Provident Fund and Trust Fund benefits they should also be paid a pension.

Unlike ordinary private sector employees, bank employees get pensions in addition to a provident fund, a practice which was discontinued for new employees after the government pumped in billions of rupees of public money to rescue state banks and top up their pension funds.

The larger private banks have reached deals with their unions to switch to defined contribution plans rather than defined benefit plans to reduce the burden and strengthen the b