Akyem Swedru, Oct. 16, GNA - The Akim Bosome Rural Bank at Akyem Swedru recorded a net profit of GHC 146,993.46 in 2008 as against GHC 78,886.94 in 2007.

The figure represents 176.34 percent increase in profit, Mr George Kumi-Brobbey, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Bank, said this at the 20th Annual General meeting of shareholders of the bank at Akyem Swedru.

He said the bank granted loans amounting to GHC 1.5 million in 2008 as against GHC 0.8 million in 2007.

The loans went to the agriculture, cottage industries, trading and the transport sectors

Mr Kumi-Brobbey said an increase of 25.47 percent was recorded in the bank's deposits from GHC 2.3 million in 2007 to GHC 2.9 million in 2008 adding that the increase was as a result of the mobilization drive intensified by directors and management and the confidence the general public has in the bank

Assets of the bank rose from GHC 2.9 million in 2007 to GHC 3.8 million in 2008, an increase of 28.53 percent due to the establishment of two additional branches at Asamankese and Kwae.

Mr Kumi-Brobbey said the bank made significant contribution to communities, institutions and organizations within its operational areas.

He mentioned some of them as the Birim Central Municipal Assembly 2008 Farmers Day, National Service week celebration at Akyem Oda and the Ekaade festival by the chiefs and elders of Kade.

The board chairman said scholarships and bursaries were granted to two brilliant but needy students in the bank catchment's area to enable them to complete their second cycle education.

Mr Eric Osei-Bonsu, Managing Director, ARB Apex Bank Limited, in a speech read on his behalf urged the bank to strengthen its internal controls to ensure that operations are carried out in an orderly manner, consistent with best practices in the banking industry.

The board and management should also put structures in place to identify and mitigate the incidence of risks, which may adversely affect the achievement of the bank's objectives.

Mr Osei-Bonsu urged them to position themselves adequately and effectively to confront the challenges that would be posed by the emerging technological developments within the banking industry.

Nana Baffour Mensah Takyi, Birim South District Chief Executive, said competition in the banking landscape is getting keener and they should devise innovative measures to remain in business.

Mr Felix Owusu-Agyapong, a former Member of Parliament (MP for Akyem Swedru, appealed to shareholders to save with the bank and also to increase their share holdings.

He appealed to the bank to channel a greater part of their loans into cottage industries to create more employment for the youth.