Loans and credit facilities rose 5.7 per cent in Bahrain to BD11.3 billion ($30.05bn) as of end-May 2022 when compared with the level as of end-May 2021 signalling a rise in economic activity, it has emerged.

The business sector accounted for 46.2pc total outstanding credit while the proportion of personal loans was 49.5pc.

A statement by the Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB), after its board of directors met yesterday, said key indicators are consistent with the return of activity to all economic sectors in the kingdom and demonstrate the financial sector’s stability and capacity to serve the national economy.

Data showed stable liquidity whereby money supply in its broad sense, M3 totalled BD15.1bn as of end-May 2022, an increase of 2.9pc compared with end-May 2021.

As for retail banks, total private deposits increased to around BD13bn as of last month’s end, an increase of 1.4pc when compared with the same period last year.

The balance sheet of the banking system (retail banks and wholesale sector banks) increased to $220.7bn as of end-May 2022, an increase of 3.7pc from the level as of end-May 2021.

Point of Sale (POS) data shows an increase in the number of transactions during the first five months of 2022, totalling 63.6m (73.1pc of them contactless), which is 40.4pc higher compared with the same period in 2021.

The total value of POS transactions in Bahrain during the period totalled BD1.5bn (45.4pc of them contactless), an increase of 32.7pc compared with the same period in 2021.

The banking sector maintained a high level of liquidity, as the capital adequacy ratio of the banking sector amounted to 19.5pc in the first quarter of 2022 as against 18.5pc in the first quarter of 2021.

The capital adequacy ratio for the various banking sectors in the first quarter of 2022 was 21.3pc for conventional retail banks, 17.8pc for conventional wholesale banks, 21.3pc for Islamic retail banks, and 16.4pc for Islamic wholesale banks.

The regulator’s second board meeting for the current year was chaired by Hassan Al Jalahma and saw a review of the CBB’s performance report and developments in the financial sector for the second quarter of 2022 and the CBB’s financial performance report as of end of May 2022.

The board also reviewed the work in progress with regards to the Financial Services Sector Development Strategy (2022-2026).

The members expressed their thanks and appreciation to the kingdom’s leadership for their support to the CBB and the efforts and measures taken to contain the repercussions of Covid-19, including the Economic Recovery Plan which contributed to the return of normal activities to all sectors of the economy.


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