Agent banking accounts double in one year


DHAKA, Feb 17, 2020 (BSS) – The number of agent banking accounts across the
country has doubled at the end of 2019 from 2018 as banks are gradually
expanding their agent banking activities.

According to the Bangladesh Bank (BB) data, the number of accounts with
agents increased to 52,57,769 at the end of 2019 from 24,55,475 in 2018.

In the year 2019, the number of agents increased to 7,914 from 5,101 in
2018 and the number of bank agent outlets also increased to 11,319 from 6,932
in the same period.

Deposit collection through agent banking was Taka 7,543.60 crore at the
end of 2019, which was Taka 3,014 crore in 2018.

Among the deposit, Taka 2,085.80 crore was collected in the urban area
while Taka 5,457.80 crore collected at rural area.

Agent banking has been introduced in Bangladesh in 2013 through a
guideline issued by Bangladesh Bank. The purpose of introducing Agent Banking
is to provide a safe and secured alternative delivery channel for banking
services to the under-privileged, under-served population, who generally live
in a geographically remote location and beyond the reach of the traditional
banking network.

This has allowed the banks to expand their business and accelerate
financial inclusion using intermediaries as agents.

The Agent Banking is playing an important role in bringing the hard-earned
money of the nonresident Bangladeshis at arm’s length of their close ones. If
we look at the geographical concentration of the distribution of remittance,
we can see that around 90 percent is distributed in the rural areas.

A total of 21 commercial banks have already taken licenses from Bangladesh
Bank while 19 banks are running their activities across the country.

The commercial 19 banks, which are currently running agent banking
activities, are Dutch Bangla Bank, Bank Asia, Al-Arafah Islami Bank, Social
Islami Bank, Modhumoti Bank, Mutual Trust Bank, NRB Commercial Bank, Standard
Bank, Agrani Bank, First Security Islami Bank, Mid Land Bank, The City Bank,
Islami Bank Bangladesh Limited, The Premier Bank, United Commercial Bank
Limited, AB Bank, NRB Bank, Brac Bank and Eastern Bank.