Bank of Kigali’s top management last week headed to Nyamata town in Bugesera district, located in Rwanda’s Eastern Province where they taught hundreds of residents on how to build individual credit worthiness in order to be attractive customers for financial institutions.
Chief executive, Dr. James Gatera who was accompanied to the district by several of the bank’s senior managers, said the visit was to keep up with a tradition of an annual visit to customers across their branches countrywide.
During the visit, the bank’s delegation visited some of their clients’ projects, to assess progress and learn about challenges that they might be facing during implementation.
The bank also met with Bugesera mayor Louis Rwagaju and discussed developments in the area and how the district can deepen partnership with the financial institution.
Rwagaju thanked the government for providing an enabling environment for business to prosper citing factors such as the country’s good infrastructure and security which have boosted investors’ confidence in the economy.
“I also thank Bank of Kigali for opening branches in Bugesera which have contributed to the development of our area,” said Rwagaju.
Dr. Gatera who addressed over 300 members of the local business community gathered at Palest Rock hotel in Nyamata, noted that regular and interactive meetings with clients helps the bank to deepen customer relations and find innovative ways of serving them better.
Gatera delved into the role of the community in building a strong financial sector and encouraged Rwandans to embrace the saving culture and, of honoring their loan obligations to build attractive individual credit worthiness profiles.
He also encouraged customers to constantly interact with the bank noting that in case of challenges in meeting their loan obligations, it’s possible to negotiate and work out solutions.
According to the National Bank of Rwanda, non-performing-loans in the financial sector currently stand at 5.9 percent, slightly above the targeted benchmark of 5 percent.
Gatera educated the locals on the role of the Credit Reference Bureau (CRB) that captures credit history of individuals and businesses and profiles their credit worthiness.
“If a client is defaulting on their loans in one bank, no other bank will be able to lend that client until they have fully paid the loans on which they are defaulting,” said Gatera.
He also encouraged locals to contribute to making Rwanda a cashless economy by using bank products such as Point of Sales (POS), internet banking, credit and debit card as well as mobile services.
Bank of Kigali was listed on the Rwanda Stock Exchange market three years ago and Gatera encouraged Rwandans to embrace the stock market as a new form of investment by buying shares in different listed companies.