COLOMBO (EcononyNext) – Sri Lanka’s National Development Bank and DFCC Bank which were pushed to merge by the regulator need to do so only if shareholders wish it, a top United National Party official has said.
UNP Treasurer Eran Wickramaratne, who was a former CEO of NDB had criticized a central bank plan reduce the number of banks and non-bank lenders for being involuntary and forced, while he was in he opposition.
"We are for consolidation of banks but not if it is coercive," he said.
Wickramaratne was asked last week by EconomyNext whether the merger of NDB and DFCC would go ahead if the opposition won the election.
"Only if shareholders want to," Wickramaratne said. "We are not in favour of using force."
After the polls, he said the policy remained the same.
NDB and DFCC are in advanced stages over a merger. Several finance companies have been taken over or merged.
There have been concerns that NDB and DFCC were being merged to be used as indirect tools for the state to borrow in international markets, and show lower numbers of central government external debt to rating agencies and the public.