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[Angola] Banco Prestígio set to start issuing investment credit

Boutique investment banking firm Banco Prestígio has announced that it will start granting investment credit this year, having increased its share capital from AKz 2.5 billion, approximately $8 million to 7.8 billion, to $25 million last December.
According to its administrator, Manuel Nicolau Diogo, the bank is now in a position to bet on the granting of investment credit, because there is a "financial cushion".
Manuel explained that so far the bank only grants short-term credit to support client's treasury operations.
Until December 21, 2018, Banco Prestígio had a minimum share capital of around 2.5 billion AKZ, five million less than what is now required by the BNA.
The regulatory capital adequacy arose as a result of Central Bank Notice No. 2/2018, published in February 2018, which directed all commercial banks to increase their share capital from AKZ 2.5 billion to 7.5 billion of kwanzas.
Until 31 December last, those who did not comply with the orientation of the Central Bank will no longer operate in the country.
The administrator of Banco Prestígio, Manuel Nicolau Diogo, said that even before the BNA notice, the bank had already tried to increase its share capital, but only because of the difficulties caused by the crisis.
He said that the banks that started operations in 2014 were confronted with the macroeconomic imbalance, a situation that affected their activity and Banco Prestige was not left out.
Despite the difficulties presented, he reiterated his support for the initiative to stabilize the national financial system and the economic and social development of the country, "whereupon the bank complied with BNA guidelines.
The bank started operating in 2015, registering a negative result in that year, but the following year (2016) showed a net profit of AKz 36 million.
In 2017 increased to AKZ 278 million and in 2018 the value before tax reached AKZ 2.3 billion.
The bank's prospects are also to increase the number of investment counters, with priority being given to places where there are business initiatives and capital movements, attracting potential investors.
He mentioned Talatona, Belas municipality, Gika as the priority sites for the investment counters' facilities, in order to reduce dependence on only one investment counter, located at Avenida Rainha Nginga, in the municipality of Luanda.
In the February announcement, BNA governor José de Lima Massano determined the legal minimum capital increase to 7.5 billion kwanzas, a measure that has become the "indispensable condition" for banks to operate in Angola.

To this end, banks with capital below the new minimum required could increase it by "issuing and subscribing to new shares", or by "incorporating into legal capital, legal reserves, free reserves or audited ".
Banks that did not reach the minimum levels, according to the notice, could make mergers or even divest the activity to one or more authorized banking institutions.
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