Jan 02, 2014 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s Central Bank is expecting two development banks and smaller state banks to be merged, Governor Nivard Cabraal said. National Savings Bank, another state bank will have to broaden their services, he said.

New foreign banks setting up in Sri Lanka will also have to be locally incorporated. At the moment foreign banks operate as branches of a parent incorporated elsewhere.

DFCC Bank and National Development Bank, both listed, will have to merge and become a stronger bank, he said, during the Central Bank’s annual policy speech Thursday.

The two banks have substantial private ownership, but they also have state shareholders.

Smaller private banks with less than 100 billion rupees in assets should grow or merge during a ‘reasonable period’ Cabraal said.

Smaller state banks should also merge, he said.

Banks are expected to submit plans for mergers by June 2014.

State-run Bank of Ceylon and People’s Bank is expected to expand their international presence.’

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