Total assets of conventional commercial banks increased by 14.7 per cent to OMR27.9 billion in August, compared to OMR24.3 billion a year ago, said the Central Bank of Oman (CBO). Of the total assets, credit disbursement accounted for 46.6 per cent and increased by 10.6 per cent as at the end of August 2015 to OMR18 billion.
Credit to the private sector increased by 10.9 per cent to reach OMR15.8 billion as at the end of August 2015. Of the total credit to the private sector as at end August, the share of the non-financial corporate sector stood at 47.2 per cent, closely followed by the household sector (mainly under personal loans) at 45 per cent, financial corporations at 5.2 per cent and other sectors the remaining 2.6 per cent
Commercial bank’s overall investments in securities declined by 9.3 per cent to OMRO3.1 billion at the end of August 2015 from OMR3.4 billion a year ago. The drop in investments resulted from the sharp decline in bank’s investments in Central Bank of Oman certificates of deposit, which fell from OMR1.8 billion in August 2014 to OMR0.12 billion in August 2015.
Investment in government development bonds, however, increased by 32.3 per cent over the year to OMR749.3 million at the end of August 2015. Banks invested OMR598.2 million in Government Treasury Bills as at the end of August 2015. Commercial bank’s investments in foreign securities increased by 12.4 per cent to OMR773.6 million in August 2015.
Aggregate deposits held with commercial banks registered an increase of 5.8 per cent to OMR18.2 billion in August 2015 from OMR17.2 billion a year ago. Government deposits with commercial banks increased by 3 per cent to OMR5.3 billion.
Deposits of public enterprises increased by 6.4 per cent to OMR1.1 billion during the same period. Private sector deposits, which constituted 63.5 per cent of total deposits with commercial banks, increased by 7.2 per cent to OMR11.6 billion in August 2015 from OMR10.8 billion a year ago.
Sector-wise, the share of households was 49.3 per cent of the total private sector deposit base, followed by non-financial corporations at 28.6 per cent, financial corporations at 19.6 percent and other sectors at 2.5 per cent
Islamic banking entities provided financing to the extent of OMR1.45 billion at the end of August 2015 when compared to OMR0.84 billion a year ago. Total deposits held with Islamic banks and windows also registered a significant increase to OMR1.2 billion in August 2015 from OMR0.4 billion outstanding as at the end of August 2014.
The total assets of Islamic banks and windows combined, amounted to OMR1.9 billion at the end of August 2015, which constituted about 6.3 per cent of the banking system assets.
National accounts data for the first quarter of the year reveal that the Sultanate’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) at current prices declined by 14.2 per cent in contrast to an increase of 2.7 per cent registered during the same period in the previous year.
The petroleum sector witnessed a sharp decline of 36.8 percent on account of lower oil prices while the non-petroleum sector registered a growth of 4.1 per cent during January-March 2015. Annual inflation rate measured by movement in the average CPI for the Sultanate stood at 0.24 per cent during January-August 2015 over the corresponding period in 2014.