Experts have forecast that credit demand will increase faster in the coming months as production and business activities in the country return to a normal pace. The recovery of domestic production is also expected to receive more support when other countries re-open their economies.
According to data from the State Bank of Vietnam, credit by the end of April increased by 1.32% compared to the end of 2019. After declining in March and early April, credit increased again in the last two weeks of April thanks to loan packages with preferential interest rates to support businesses and individuals affected by COVID-19. By the end of April, credit packages announced by banks were worth more than VND650 trillion (US$28.26 billion).
According to Nguyen Duc Vinh, General Director of the Vietnam Prosperity Joint-Stock Commercial Bank (VPBank), his bank built plans for the post-COVID-19 pandemic quite early. Right after the COVID-19 outbreak was controlled and the Government eased social distancing, VPBank has launched programmes to boost domestic business and production. As of May 4, the bank provided new loans worth VND18 trillion for 13,000 individual and corporate borrowers.
The Vietnam Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (Agribank) has so far this year also provided loans worth VND481 trillion with preferential interest rates.
A representative of a bank, who declined to be named, said after the pandemic, consumers would tend to increase the use of online services and prioritise health care.
According to Nguyen Toan Thang, General Secretary of the Vietnam Banking Association, there would be many big changes when the pandemic ends.
Business and production conditions, operating environment, market structure and production methods of firms will change to create better supply and value chains, which will require banks to adapt to seize business opportunities, Thang said.
Banking expert Can Van Luc said banks needed to carefully study market recovery trends after the pandemic to optimise business opportunities.
In addition, Luc suggested banks enhance IT applications and develop new business models based on technology and that suit new tastes of customers to increase labour productivity, cut costs and meet customer's needs.