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KBZ Bank faces fine for unapproved branches

11 September 2018

U Soe Min, the deputy governor of the Central Bank of Myanmar (CBM), said that the regulator is in process of fining KBZ Bank for opening branches without approval follow in a board decision on the matter.

The deputy governor made the statement in a response to the joint public accounts committee's report (7/2018) at a Union Parliament meeting on 10 September. The report noted that the central bank is losing out on money because it has not levied fines and banks opening branches illegally.

According to the report, central bank statistics showed that KBZ Bank had opened 426 as of 7 February 2018. However, KBZ had announced in state-owned media that it reached 500 branches as of early November 2017.

The central bank asked KBZ Bank to explain the discrepancy in May this year, and the commercial lender responded with a list of 410 branches and 99 mini branches. The public accounts report showed that at least 33 branches were opened without central bank approval.

U Soe Min said that the regulator is now in the process of assessing the exact number of branches that were opened without approval.

MFSM research shows that KBZ Bank has the largest branch network in the country, with 510 branches as of 11 September. This accounts for almost 29% of total private bank branches in Myanmar.

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