Sept 02, Colombo: Secretary to the Finance and Planning Ministry Secretary Dr. P.B. Jayasundara has said that the government has no intention to privatize the state-owned People's Bank.
Dismissing media reports that distorted the proposed amendment to the People's Bank Act, Dr. Jayasundera has clarified that measures have been taken to increase its capital base, which has not changed since its formation, to strengthen the Bank's financial stability and further expansion of its activities in the economy.
At the opening ceremony of Oluvil Fisheries Harbor Sunday, Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa also affirmed that the government does not plan to privatize the bank and said fears of privatization of People's Bank or any other state enterprise are unwarranted.
The People's Bank, the second largest state bank in the island, was established in 1961 by the People's Bank Act to develop and assist the co-operative movement of Sri Lanka, rural banking, agriculture and industry and to carry on banking and pawn brokering. Over the years, the Bank has expanded its branch network throughout the country with the objective of strengthening its business operations in the region.
President Rajapaksa in his capacity as Finance Minister last month submitted a proposal to the cabinet of ministers and received approval to amend the People's Bank Act No. 29 of 1961, as the capital of the Bank had remained unchanged from what it was at the time of its formation.