- The Cabinet approved ‘in-principle’ the constitution of an alternative mechanism, likely to be a ministerial group, that will oversee the proposals for mergers among banks.
- As of today, there are 20 public sector banks plus the State Bank of India (SBI).
- Adding SBI’s five subsidiaries and Bharatiya Mahila Bank had already been merged with the country’s largest bank.
- The Centre’s nudge towards consolidation among public sector banks assumes significance as most of them are grappling with huge levels of non-performing assets or NPAs, slow credit off take and resultant pressures on capital adequacy.
- It adds commercial strengths and prevents multiplicity of resources being spent in the same areas.
- It also improves the capacity of the banking system to absorb shocks that the market throws up.
- Stronger public sector banks will help meet the credit needs of a growing economy, absorb shocks and give them the capacity to raise resources without depending unduly on the state exchequer.