Bringing changes in mindset-up by providing adequate training with proper technology turned Bangladesh House Building Finance Corporation (BHBFC) into a smart lending agency.
“We primarily focused on BHBFC human resource management, where we concentrate identifying corrupt officials, brought changes in behavioral pattern and finally developed several teams to led loan disbursement and recovery drive hassle free. Punishing some corrupt officials and rewarding some others help shape-up the new human resource of BHBFC,” the chairman of the Board of Directors of BHBFC told at an interview with Business Mirror at his office recently.
He said the BHBFC will keep remain the rate of interest (RoI) unchanged though the central bank has significantly raise rate of interest from the new fiscal.
The BHBFC has set example for good practices in house building at semi urban areas which pave Islamic Development Bank (IDB) to provide Tk 3000 crore more fund as project loan to to BHBFC for buildings protecting countrywide agri land, Mr Salim Uddin said.
“We are not directly controlled by the Bangladesh Bank. We are also not guided by the monetary policy as our main objective is to build buildings with affordable cost and compliant with best practices” the veteran accounting professor and FCA told.
He informed that for its Rural and Peri-urban Housing Finance Project, BHBFC will receive a loan €270.57 million, or roughly Tk3,000 crore, from the Islamic Development Bank (IDB). The IDB approved the loan during its annual conference held on May 10–13, 2023 in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia for BHBFC’s success in implementing a similar project earlier.
This is the project’s second loan. Back in 2017, IDB approved a loan of $85.11 million for the same project in Bangladesh.
The main objectives of the project are to ensure access of the rural and peri-urban people to housing finance and to save agricultural lands from being eroded for housing purposes.
Besides, Agency Finance Development, a French finance authority is also in talk with BHBFC to provide Tk 1000 crore to implement a green, affordable and sustainable building project.
As smart financing approach the BHBFC has introduced a total Information Technology based agency as it launched general accounting software, management information system, RTGS payment, mobile apps, centralized payroll, e home loan software and borrower identification card.
Mr Salim said if a single Taka is invested into house building industry it directly add Tk 1.7 into the economy as around 400 industry is linked with house building sector.
During his five years tenure of chairmanship Prof. Salim graduated the BHBFC from an indolent corporation to a smart, technology based fast lending agency.
Steps like punishing several corrupt officials, introduction of latest software and apps, mainstreaming payment procedure, uproot brokers syndicate and introduction of special reward for best officials turn BHBFC into a fantastic organization.
Now mindset of BHBFC officials has turned as a successful service oriented organization.
“We are really successful in conversing our human resource as service oriented from long alleged corrupt and lengthy bureaucratic BHBFC officials,” he said
Previously BHBFC had no banking wing for which it took months to know status of a loan recipients payment status but now loan recipients can easily pay their monthly installments through Sonali Bank, Janata Bank and Islami bank and BHBFC get instant payment status by introducing Real Time Gross Settlement system.
Customers of Bangladesh House Building Finance Corporation (BHBFC) can deposit loan installments online at any branch of Janata Bank.
This resolution was taken through a memorandum of understanding (MoU) held between the two institutions on Tuesday (8 February) at Janata Bank’s Head Office.
The BHBFC has achieved rare success in reducing its classified loans. On the last day of the fiscal year 2022-23, the amount of classified loans of the institution was only Tk 1.6 billion (160 crore) or 3.80 per cent.
The classified loans were 4.65 per cent of total loans of the institution in FY 2021-22. The growth is 12.57 per cent, says the institution in a statement.
BHBFC sanctioned Tk 846 crore as house building loans and disbursed Tk 696 crore for the same in the last fiscal year, which are the new records for the institution. The growth in both sanctioning and disbursement of loans is more than 18 per cent.
The total loan recovery is also the highest since the inception of the institution, which is about Tk 716 crore. The growth in loan recovery is about 10 per cent. The state-owned organisation has also achieved its highest-ever profit as a result of record success in all indicators indicative of business objectives. The amount of profit earned in the last fiscal year is about Tk 264 crore. In this case the growth rate is about 9 per cent.
This achievement has been possible under the directives of the Financial Institutions Department (FID) of the Ministry of Finance, proper monitoring of the Board of Directors and efficient leadership of the management.
The sole state-owned institution providing home loans and investment across the country has achieved this success in almost every indicator like reducing classified loans at a minimum level, loan sanctioning and disbursement, loan recovery, resolving court cases and overall audit objections in 2022-23.
The financier has made loans more affordable for the middle-income people, he said. Moreover, the loan ceilings were also raised for the sake of people living in rural areas across the country, he said.
Commercial banks currently account for 76 percent of the market share in residential housing loans whereas BHBFC only 6 percent. The corporation plans to enhance its market share by giving loans for development of residence.
The financial institution also got the go-ahead to increase its number of branches to 100 from the existing 29 to provide more rural people with loans, the top executive said. It also received regulatory approval to increase its capital to Tk 1,000 crore from existing Tk 110 crore, he said.
BHBFC has three kinds of loan schemes — rural housing, metropolitan housing and housing for expatriates. Under the metropolitan scheme, clients living in Dhaka and Chittagong metropolitan areas will get the highest loan of Tk 1 crore at 9.5 percent interest for different tenures ranging from 5 to 20 years.
The highest loan limit under the rural housing scheme has been set at Tk 60 lakh that will come with an interest rate of 8.5 percent for the highest 20 years. The corporation for the first time has launched a loan scheme for the expatriates to bring home more remittance. The special package for expatriates offers loan for the highest 25 years. “Expatriates can easily avail the loan which comes with easy conditions.”
Bangladeshis living in Middle Eastern countries, Malaysia, Singapore, the UK, US, Australia, Canada and Italy are entitled to get the loan, he said.